Hilda Smits. Tor Ulven en die oog soos ‘n jagter

 

“A twitch, a nervous tic, so to speak, in the light (or the dark), an occasional spasm, a breeze fingering the gap between the curtains, letting in a faint hint of the summer night, creating a narrow slit that gapes for a moment and then vanishes, leaving behind a provisional darkness, before a new twitch and a new darkness; this happens every time the wind (he’s purposefully left the window open on account of the heat) parts the gap between the curtains, which ripple and bulge (like curtains on stage when actors or stagehands bustle by behind them) before settling again into relatively still, skirt like folds. A skirt with a high slit and the whole world hidden behind it. In theory, you just have to open the door and go to find everything, absolutely everything”. Ulven, T. (2012). Replacement. (T. A. Pierce, Vert.). Champaign, Illinois: Dalkey Archive Press. (Oorspronklike werk in 1993 gepubliseer).

So begin die Noorse skrywer, Tor Ulven, sy laaste boek, Replacement. Ulven, ‘n kluisenaar, het net een onderhoud gedurende sy lewe toegestaan. Daar is nie veel informasie oor hom op die internet nie, en byna niks oor sy persoonlike lewe nie. Volgens die Wikipedia is sy vroeë werke, bestaande uit tradisionele modernistiese poësie, sterk beïnvloed deur André Breton en die surrealistiese beweging. In later jare ontwikkel hy ‘n meer onafhanklike stem, sowel stilisties as tematies. Die laaste deel van sy werk bestaan hoofsaaklik uit prosa. Hy is gebore in 1953, en pleeg selfmoord in 1995, twee jaar na die voltooiing van Replacement. Ulven word beskou as een van Noorwee se grootste digters.

Van sy boek word daar onder andere gesê, “Replacement serves as a testament to the pain of repression, the profundity of the commonplace, and, in the arbitrariness of the beautifully observed, the notion that all the moments in life are of equal worth. Autobiographical or not, it’s a suitable requiem”. Steve Danziger, The Coffin Factory.

Die ding van Ulven se boek wat my soos ‘n drie ton brommer tussen die oë getref het was die beeldrykheid daarvan. Met elke paragraaf sink hy sy hande, bietjie soos ‘n chirurg, tot diep in die binnegoed van dit wat hy beskryf, word elke sintuig tot breekpunt ingespan. Geen gebeurtenis is te klein, van te min belang, vir Ulven se fyn waarnemingsvermoë nie.

“….at the very moment the light leaking through the curtains changes from pale yellow-white to pale violet-white (that is, when the street lamp comes on, which will probably be soon), you can, without getting up, but just by stretching out your arm and extending your body as far as it will go, so far that it pulls at your scar, reach the switch (the knob that looks like a little round nose) and flip it, and be blinded by light suddenly filling the lampshade, your face, the bed, and part of the room…At first the bright sphere blinds you, and the stinging light forces you to blink and shut your eyes, as if they were full of soapy water, but eventually you grow used to the strong, dazzling glare, and it strikes you that if you stare at it long enough, you might go blind, completely blind, and then you’ll never have to see darkness again, not the darkness under the bed nor any other kind of darkness, and it won’t matter if the light is on or off, but then a terrifying thought hits you, namely, that if you go blind you’ll see darkness and nothing but darkness for all eternity, and it won’t just be dark under the bed, in the closet, in the corners, and so on, but dark overall, the same darkness that, you know, sits in the center of your eye like a hole in the ice, a hole covered by a transparent film, and if you go blind the film will break, and all the darkness that’s stored in your eye, and all the darkness stored in your mind’s eye, will come flooding out to drown the earth”. Ulven, T. (2012). Replacement. (T. A. Pierce, Vert.). Champaign, Illinois: Dalkey Archive Press. (Oorspronklike werk in 1993 gepubliseer).

Ek lees die boek tot op die bodem van die nag, en dink by myself dit is waaroor die ding van skryf gaan, die ding van om die wêreld met jou oë te slag soos ‘n wafferse jagter. Vincent Van Gogh het gesê “If we study Japanese art, we see a man who is undoubtedly wise, philosophic and intelligent, who spends his time doing what?… He studies a single blade of grass”.

Ek neem myself voor om die ses diere van my sintuie wakker te skud, en het as ‘n oefening in observasie die volgende gedig gepen na ‘n herinnering uit my kinderjare –

 

die oog

 

die wind hier en skielik swem ons weer in die oog daar borrel water

uit die grond onder my voete borrel wit seep soepel was ons lywe.

sondag die groot dag van god. my pa sit en tob langs die water lang

hand op sy ken dop hy die dag om en ons swem daar ver onder die water

swem ons kleiner as een uur  swem ons onder die dowe water. en alles

was helder toe selfs my skoppende bene waar hulle voel na die diepste

donker onder voet na die donker soos ‘n pupil sonder einde.  sien hoe breek

my wit lyf kragtig soos musiek die water en langs die oewer bloekombome oog

getuies van stilte, en ek die verkenner dra die vel van die son na bo –

 

Meer oor Ulven se boek:

 

http://www.full-stop.net/2012/09/17/reviews/david-winters/replacement-tor-ulven/

http://thecoffinfactory.com/review-replacement-by-tor-ulven/

 

 

Bookmark and Share

2 Kommentare op “Hilda Smits. Tor Ulven en die oog soos ‘n jagter”

  1. Gert :

    Hi Hilde

    Gepraat van kluisenaars, het jy al van Henry Darger gehoor? As jy ooit in Chicago kom, gaan soek dit asseblief op en skryf vir ons ‘n storie.

    http://gertrautenbach.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-realms-of-unreal.html

    Dankie, G

  2. Hilda Smits :

    Dankie, Gert. Ek sal so ‘n bietjie nalees oor Henry Darger.

  •