Saturday, 2 February 2019

To Ursula LeGuin

I'm reading Ursula LeGuin's The Lathe of Heaven. What a find. The protagonist is so darn likable, despite being passive and helpless!

LeGuin died last year. I'd like to pay her homage with her own words. Here's a quote from the book.
Are there really people without resentment, without hate, she wondered. People who never go cross-granted to the universe? Who recognize evil, and resist evil, and yet are utterly unaffected by it?
    Of course there are. Countless, the living and the dead. Those who have returned in pure compassion to the wheel, those who follow the way that cannot be followed without knowing they follow it, the sharecropper’s wife in Alabama and the lama in Tibet and the entomologist in Peru and the millworker in Odessa and the greengrocer in London and the goatherd in Nigeria and the old, old man sharpening a stick by a dry streambed somewhere in Australia, and all the others. There is not one of us who has not known them. There are enough of them, enough to keep us going. Perhaps.
The quote makes me recall a favorite passage of mine, from Italo Calvino's The Invisible Cities:
The inferno of the living is not something that will be; if there is one, it is what is already here, the inferno where we live every day, that we form by being together. There are two ways to escape suffering it. The first is easy for many: accept the inferno and become such a part of it that you can no longer see it. The second is risky and demands constant vigilance and apprehension: seek and learn to recognize who and what, in the midst of inferno, are not inferno, then make them endure, give them space.
I tip my hat to both LeGuin and Calvino. En serio, mucho respeto!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.