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the simple life

"One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words." Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Friday, August 26, 2005

Life and Times of Michael K

''Let me tell you the meaning of the sacred and alluring garden that blooms in the heart of the desert and produces the food of life. The garden for which you are presently heading is nowhere and everywhere except in the camps. It is another name for the only place where you belong, Michaels, where you do not feel homeless. It is off every map, no road leads to it that is merely a road, and only you know the way.''

"I have become an object of charity, he thought. Everywhere I go there are people waiting to exercise their forms of charity on me. All these years , and still I carry the look of an orphan. ...They want me to open my heart and tell them the story of a life lived in cages. They want to hear about all the cages I have lived in, as if I wre a budgie or a whilte mouse or a monkey.... When my story was finished, people would have shaken their heads and been sorry and angry and plied me with food and drink; women would have taken me into their beds and mothered me in the dark. Whereas the truth is that I have been a gardener, first for the Council, later for myself, and gardners spend their time with their noses to the ground...."

"It excited him, he found, to say recklessly, the truth, the truth about me. 'I am a gardener,'..."

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