Archive for September, 1990
An extract from the novel Bruno (WSOY, 1990)
Since her first collection of poems, which appeared in 1975, Tiina Kaila (born 1951 [from 2004, Tiina Krohn]) has published four children’s books and three volumes of poetry. Her novel Bruno is a fictive narrative about the Italian philosopher Giordano Bruno, who was burned at the stake in 1600. It is the conflict inherent in her main character that interests Kaila: his philosophical and scientific thought is much closer to that of the present day than, for example, that of Copernicus, and it is this that led him to the stake; and yet he did never abandon his fascination for magic.
The novel follows Bruno on his journeys in Italy; France, Germany and England, where he is accompanied by the French ambassador, Michel de Castelnau. Bruno finds England a barbaric place: ‘…These people believe that it is enough that they know how to speak English, even though no one outside this little island understands a word. No civilised language is spoken here’
In the extract that follows, Bruno, approaching the chalk cliffs of Dover by sea, makes what he feels to be a great discovery: ‘Creation is as infinite as God. And life is the supremest, the vastest and the most inconceivable of all.’
I was leaning on the foredeck handrail, peering into a greenish mist. The bow was thrashing between great swells, blustering and hissing and shuddering like some huge wheezing animal: Augh – aagh – ho-haugh! Augh – aagh – ho-haugh!
Plenty of space had been reserved for our use on this new two-master cargo boat. Castelnau was transferring his whole family from France – his wife, his daughter, his servants, his library, his furniture, his past and me – to London, where, as you know, he had been appointed Ambassador of France. More…
An extract from Mattan från Kars (‘The rug from Kars’). Introduction by Tuva Korsström
Mother Limberg and Apelman’s Anna Lina were sitting together on the steps up to Mother Limberg’s cabin in Mickelgård Street in Tulavall. They were mourning. They were grieving for the old army captain, Alexander Grunnstedt, who had fought in the Caucasus in his youth, had lived alone in the Limberg’s gable room in his old age and then had lost his way in the forest, had a heart attack and been carried off in his coffin by his daughter-in-law.
It was late summer and sunny weather.
‘She could’ve had him buried here,’ said Mother Limberg.
‘She thought it too simple here,’ said Anna Lina. More…