„Ale książki” | And Yet the Books | Czesław Miłosz

And Yet the Books | Czesław Miłosz

Bible translations to polish language by Czesł...

And yet the books will be there on the shelves, separate beings,
That appeared once, still wet
As shining chestnuts under a tree in autumn,
And touched, coddled, began to live
In spite of fires on the horizon, castles blown up,
Tribes on the march, planets in motion.
“We are,” they said, even as their pages
were being torn out, or a buzzing flame
licked away their letters. So much more durable
than we are, whose frail warmth
cools down, with memory, disperses, perishes.
I imagine the earth when I am no more:
Nothing happens, no loss, it’s still a strange pageant,
Women’s dresses, dewy lilacs, a song in the valley,
Yet the books will be there on the shelves, well born,
Derived from people, but also from radiance, heights.

Burning pedigree books in 1682.

Czesław Miłosz | „Ale książki”

I dotykane, pieszczone trwać zaczęły
Mimo łun na horyzoncie, zamków wylatujących w powietrze,
Plemion w pochodzie, planet w ruchu.
Jesteśmy – mówiły, nawet  kiedy
wydzierano z nich karty .
Albo litery zlizywał buzujący płomień,

O ileż trwalsze od nas,których ułomne ciepło
Stygnie razem z pamięcią, rozprasza się, ginie.

Wyobrażam sobie ziemię kiedy mnie nie będzie
I nic, żadnego ubytku, dalej dziwowisko,
Suknie kobiet, mokry jaśmin, pieśń w dolinie.

Ale książki będą na półkach, dobrze urodzone,
Z ludzi, choć też z jasności, wysokości.


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buying books

A. Edward Newton

A. Edward Newton–he did indeed have a lot of books! (Credit: Wikipedia)

“The buying of more books than one can perchance read is nothing less than the soulreaching toward infinity, and this passion is the only thing that raises us above the beasts that perish.” — A. Edward Newton (1863-1940)

… It occurred to me earlier today that I haven’t sold any books, CDs, or DVDs on Half.com or Amazon in more than six months. I can’t help but get chills. I don’t think I’m going to like this brave new world of precious art, literature, and music loaded onto cheap plastic gizmos.

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just read

“The truth is, everyone likes to look down on someone. If your favorites are all avant-garde writers who throw in Sanskrit and German, you can look down on everyone. If your favorites are all Oprah Book Club books, you can at least look down on mystery readers. Mystery readers have sci-fi readers. Sci-fi can look down on fantasy. And yes, fantasy readers have their own snobbishness. I’ll bet this, though: in a hundred years, people will be writing a lot more dissertations on Harry Potter than on John Updike. Look, Charles Dickens wrote popular fiction. Shakespeare wrote popular fiction—until he wrote his sonnets, desperate to show the literati of his day that he was real artist. Edgar Allan Poe tied himself in knots because no one realized he was a genius. The core of the problem is how we want to define “literature”. The Latin root simply means “letters”. Those letters are either delivered—they connect with an audience—or they don’t. For some, that audience is a few thousand college professors and some critics. For others, its twenty million women desperate for romance in their lives. Those connections happen because the books successfully communicate something real about the human experience. Sure, there are trashy books that do really well, but that’s because there are trashy facets of humanity. What people value in their books—and thus what they count as literature—really tells you more about them than it does about the book.”
Brent Weeks

Book Spine Poetry

Book Spine Poetry (Photo credit: teachingsagittarian)


A very random book meme

01. Look at the list and bold those you have read.
02. Italicise those you intend to read
03. Underline the books you LOVE.
04. Reprint this list in your own LJ so we can try and track down these people who’ve only read 6 and force books upon them.

001 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
002 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
003 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
004 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
005 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
006 The Bible
007 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
008 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
009 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
010 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
011 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
012 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
013 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
014 Complete Works of Shakespeare
015 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
016 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
017 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
018 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
019 The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
020 Middlemarch – George Eliot
021 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
022 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
023 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
024 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
025 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
026 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
027 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
028 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
029 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
030 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
031 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
032 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
033 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
034 Emma – Jane Austen
035 Persuasion – Jane Austen
036 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – C.S. Lewis
037 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
038 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
039 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
040 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
041 Animal Farm – George Orwell
042 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
043 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
044 A Prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving
045 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
046 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
047 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
048 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
049 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
050 Atonement – Ian McEwan
051 Life of Pi – Yann Martel
052 Dune – Frank Herbert
053 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
054 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
055 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
056 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
057 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
058 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
059 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
060 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
061 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
062 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
063 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
064 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
065 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
066 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
067 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
068 Bridget Jones’ Diary – Helen Fielding
069 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
070 Moby Dick – Herman Melville
071 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens

072 Dracula – Bram Stoker
073 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
074 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
075 Ulysses – James Joyce
076 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
077 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
078 Germinal – Emile Zola
079 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
080 Possession – AS Byatt
081 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
082 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
083 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
084 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
085 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
086 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
087 Charlotte’s Web – EB White
088 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
089 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
090 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
091 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
092 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
093 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
094 Watership Down – Richard Adams
095 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
096 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
097 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
098 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
(This doesn’t count as part of the Complete Works?)
099 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

The sad thing is, I was looking at many of these titles thinking, “Have I read this or not?” ….