Shopping cart is empty.

Birchbark Blog

Too Loud A Solitude

Louise Erdrich - Sunday, July 12, 2009
I have trouble writing this blog post because I take it all so seriously.  I still write by hand in art paper notebooks, and am thinking of getting out my old typewriter because I miss typed manuscripts.  Then again . . . I am also thinking of writing  a whole book on birchbark with my teeth.  I do have news of a terrific read.  If you like Borges, Saramago, Kafka, Angela Carter, or writers born in Brno in 1914, who died in Prague in 1987, if you liked Bohumil Hrabal's Closely Watched Trains, or if you have never heard of Hrabal and you love books -- this is your book. 

Too Loud a Solitude, by Bohumil Hrabal.  I read it a month ago.  Then I read it again last night.  Maybe I'll read it again today.  The book is about a man whose job is crushing books.  It is a book about loving books and destroying books, about love and destruction, the crushing of ideas, the drinking of beer.  It is not a long book, but you will read it again and again.  It is a perfect book, I think. 

Besides reading this one book again and again, I've been reading newspapers.  I have been reading lots of newspapers with the awful feeling that the wonderful feel of print under my fingers, the dry snap as you unfold a newspaper, the paging back and forth, the tactile reality of the newspaper, is going to vanish.  So I've suddenly subscribed to several newspapers that I casually picked up every other day at the grocery store.  And all I give people for birthdays now is newspaper subscriptions.  I am doing this not only for the integrity of the news and the selfish feeling of joy I get when unfolding a newspaper, but for the many people I know who rely on completing the puzzles on newspaper pages -- for the lovely Finnish-American-Upper Peninsula Geology Professor I met on the airplane.  He was in his late eighties and had a folded crossword puzzle in his hand.  He was stuck but did not want me to brainstorm on an answer.  He enjoyed looking at his puzzle last thing before he went to sleep, and waking with the answer.  His was too loud a solitude, and puzzles are a friendly noise.

Buy a newspaper today.  Or Too Loud A Solitude.

Louise   

Canoe Family

Recent PostsRSS


Tags

Too Loud A Solitude city of books British Navy Ha Jin The Game of Silence The Birchbark House The Porcupine Year Beth Dooley support Education favorite tree Poetry Wendy Makoons Geniusz Fireworks Ice Botany Anishinabemowin ptsd plants Roberto Bolano Peak Oil Video Jim Harrison Hillary Clinton School Gardens show your love Climate Change Michael Jackson Zombies Aza Philip Roth Collective Denial Alan Weisman Population Afghanistan Gary Clement Crushing Books Czech Writer Gryphon Press Birchbark Books Mankato Powwow The Resilient Gardener Native Arts Brown Dog Nero Women and Trees E.L. Doctorow aquifer north dakota More Remarkable Trees twins Gail Caldwell Green Team how good looking you are Too Much Happiness Victory Gardens This Green World Let's Take the Long Way Home Up Late Again Native People S.C. Gwynne devoted customers coyote graphix Minnesota solstice, Thomas King Small Bookstores as Commons Dartmouth bill mckibben gratitude Keeping Heart on Pine Ridge Unnatural Disasters anniversary The Ojibwe cafe closing Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive Empire of the Summer Moon H2Oil 2666 photography William Trevor 350.org Keepers of the Trees japan Chickadee favorite dog Islam green incarnation Anton Treuer Chitra Divakaruni Mohamed's Ghosts The Farmer's Daughter the most romantic city in the world Louise Love Alice Munro The Royal Prussian Library Bohumil Hrabal Pembina Vic Glover boarding school spring World on the Edge gardens knowledge trees Magers and Quinn tree books Makoons favorite book NACDI:All My Relations The Transition Handbook Catalyst President Obama National Book Award State Troopers Aubrey/Maturin Light in August Bleak House Minneapolis Dogs leaves and snow post holiday reads ependent Kate DiCamillo Greenland euphoria Rare Books buffalo post holiday Remarkable Trees thanks health care reform Peak Water Anishinabe customers joy mississippi The Wealth of Nature Tar Sands birchbark house series Nemesis language revitalization Hilary Mantel Stephen Salisbury sweden Milkweed Press ireland Kabul cafe Patrick O'Brian pilgrims france italy monkey in a dryer thank you friends Tree Houses Emily Johnson fresh water local economy Easter Island adventure book and dinner club neighborhood The Blue Sky Kenwood Gardens Ojibwemowin Canada Wastepaper Book Review Bill Moyers Journal peculiar touches of green and gold Wolf Hall Interview friends Keystone XL china germany Ojibwe

Archive