05 June 2005

Trapped in a Patricia Highsmith novel

Which Patricia Highsmith novels took place in Paris? Any of them? I know she lived here. My favourite streets are the really narrow, windy ones -- especially those not filled with tourists. Whenever I'm walking such streets, I think of claustrophobic, paranoid pursuits in Highsmith novels -- disorientation, panic, confusion. It's so comforting.

Yesterday Dana and I saw a lot of art, and walked a whole lot. It rained on and off through the day. Every once in a while I stumble on some visual art that I find thoroughly inspiring, and such a stumble occurred: a loop of about a dozen very brief videos by a guy named Igor Krenz. In each video, he attempted some simple feat, like breaking a bottle or throwing a little ball into a tin. In slightly strange ways. But he made me want to write, and got my mind churning. I really, really, really don't write enough. Maybe when I get home, which will be very late tomorrow, the writing will flood out. In Oslo, I made a lot of progress on my novel, but only two poems have arrived. Perhaps on the long flight tomorrow.

We walked past the Shoah memorial yesterday, but it was Saturday, and it was closed, as was the Jewish Museum. Might go back there this morning -- at least to the memorial. What we saw through the locked gates looked very stunning, very thoughtful, very sad. We also passed a huge synagogue, but it was on a very narrow street and it wasn't detached, so you couldn't even back up to get a good look at its stone-and-stained-glass facade, like you can do with churches. The Holocaust memorial, too, was on a very narrow, unbusy street, and I wondered about Jewishness being hidden away here in Paris.

Hope to see Sam Andreyev later this morning. And the Jewish stuff again. And then later tonight, Dana and I will hit the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triumph, and the Palais de Tokyo, which sounds pretty incredible. We'll have to get back to the hotel in time for me to down the Portuguese bottle of wine that Gunnar sneakily bought for me in a small village near Brandbu.

Over and out.

P.S. - Thanks to those who have commented on my blog, and on the poems I've posted!

3 Comments:

At June 05, 2005 1:14 pm , Blogger Mark said...

Two poems in, what, two weeks, and you're down on yourself? That's my output for two months if I'm lucky.

Enjoying your blog. Have a safe trip home.

 
At June 05, 2005 1:18 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

stuart;
really enjoying yr blog, especially as im giong to be in paris in about a week and a bit (starting in london, then portsmouth, and then paris ...) - tho i dont know how to reach Sam - perhaps you could help with that? take it easy
derek

 
At June 14, 2005 9:48 pm , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm, Ripley's Game was mostly set in rural France. Like the blog immensely. Is Shakespeare & Co. still in business in Paris? I'm sure Ripley would go there to pick up the Herald-Tribune...then on to the American Express office to collect his mail.

 

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