De Engelse schrijver Nick Stone werd geboren op 31 oktober 1966 in Cambridge. Zie ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2009.
Uit: The Unarmed Robbery
"Nick, the radio doesn't work."
"That's because you smacked it with your shoe," I said.
"'Cause it wasn't loud enough!"
"Laurie, did you really think that would fix it?"
She folded her arms and stared out the window into the night. "I don't understand, Nick. Why are we using a '91 Geo Prism for this?"
"I told you, you have to use a nondescript vehicle for pulling a robbery. And a '91 is about as nondescript as they get!"
Laurie turned and glared at me. "And what would you know about pulling a robbery? We've never done this before."
"True, but how hard could it be? I pull out the gun, ask for money and drive away."
"Ask for money??"
"Well yeah! I mean, with a gun in their face, will I really have to demand it? Besides, I think it's common courtesy to be polite while screaming obscenities and waving a gun in someone's face."
She eyed me suspiciously. "Have you been smoking banana peels again?"
By two in the morning we were sitting in our Geo in a parking lot across the street from a Sunoco gas station in Allen Park, MI. The station was deserted but still open. We watched for several minutes, but no one came or left the station. So far, everything was perfect.
"Do you really think you can pull this off?" she asked.
I flashed her a quick smile. "No one's as smooth as Nick Stone!"
When I was convinced there were no customers inside, I had Laurie pull the getaway Geo up to the Sunoco's front door, parking so close no one else could get inside the building. I put on my ski mask, grabbed Laurie's .38 snub-nose revolver and a cloth bag and went inside.
"Hi there!" was my congenial greeting to the girl behind the counter. "You know what I am," and I pointed to the ski mask, "you know what this is," I held up the gun, "and I assume you know what to do with this," I said, and tossed her the bag.”
Nick Stone (Cambridge, 31 oktober 1966)
De Amerikaanse dichter, schrijver en literatuurcriticus Bruce Bawer werd geboren op 31 oktober 1956 in New York. Zie ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2008 en ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2009.
The View from an Airplane at Night, over California
This is a sight that Wordsworth never knew,
whether looking down from mountain, bridge, or hill:
An endless field of lights, white, orange, and blue,
as small and bright as stars, and nearly still,
but moving slowly, many miles below,
in blackness, as stars crawl across the skies,
and ranked in rows that stars will never know,
like beads strung on a thousand latticed ties.
Would even Wordsworth, seeing what I see,
know that these lights are not well-ordered stars
that have been here a near-eternity,
but houses, streetlights, factories, and cars?
Or has this slim craft made too high a leap
above it all, and is the dark too deep?
Walking down Seventh Avenue in the snow
I turn down Forty-eighth Street and see
a dozen guitars hanging in a window.
Lord, it’s the place where I bought my saxophone.
Suddenly I remember: twelve years old,
my voice about to change, the instrument
heavy in my hands, bright gold, ice cold.
I blew my lungs out, but it only brayed.
The salesman reached out, took it away from me,
wiped the mouthpiece on his sleeve, and rent
the warm air with a perfect bell-like tone.
My father and I smiled, and the salesman played
an old, familiar Hoagy Carmichael song,
and the stockboy put down a box and sang along
Bruce Bawer (New York, 31 oktober 1956)
De Canadese schrijver Joseph Boyden werd geboren op 31 oktober 1966 in Willowdale, Ontario. Zie ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2008 en ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2009.
Uit: Three Day Road
“It whistles like a giant eagle screaming, so close now that I must cover my ears.
I have paddled by myself against the big river's current for many days to get here. No mind. My one living relation died in a faraway place, and I am here to greet his friend Elijah. Elijah Whiskeyjack is as close to a relation as I still have, and I will paddle him home.
Joseph Netmaker brought the letter out to me. Winter had just started to settle itself into the country. Joseph walked on snowshoes from the town. "This is for you, Niska," he said. "It is from the Canadian boss, their hookimaw."
As soon as I saw the brown letter, the English words written upon it, I knew what it contained. I sat down beside the fire and stirred at it with a stick while Joseph read, first out loud and in his stumbling English, then for me in our language.
"'Serial No. 6711. Deeply regret to inform you, Private First Class Xavier Bird, infantry, officially reported died of wounds in the field, November 3, 1918. Director of Records.' "
I waited for more, but that was all. When Joseph left, I was alone.
Many moons later, when the winter ice was leaving and travel was difficult, Joseph came back with another letter. He explained that it was in reference to Elijah, and that Old Man Ferguson had given it to him to give to me since I was the closest thing to a relation that Elijah had.
The letter said that Elijah had been wounded, that he had only one leg now, that he had tried to rescue another soldier, was given a medal for bravery. It said that although weak, he had healed enough to travel and was expected to arrive in the same town from which he and Xavier had left so long ago.
I had Joseph explain to me how the wemistikoshiw calendar worked, what month I was to be there, and I made careful preparations to journey by canoe to that town where Elijah would arrive. I left early in the summer and paddled up the river. It was difficult. I am older now, but I travelled light. Joseph had asked to come along, but I told him no.“
Joseph Boyden (Willowdale, 31 oktober 1966)
De Engelse dichter John Keats werd geboren op 31 oktober 1795 in Finsbury Pavement in London. Zie ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2006 en ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2007 en ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2008 en ook mijn blog van 31 oktober 2009.
Bright star, would I were stedfast as thou art--
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like nature's patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors--
No--yet still stedfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever--or else swoon to death.
In Drear-Nighted December
In drear-nighted December,
Too happy, happy tree,
Thy branches ne'er remember
Their green felicity:
The north cannot undo them
With a sleety whistle through them;
Nor frozen thawings glue them
From budding at the prime.
In drear-nighted December,
Too happy, happy brook,
Thy bubblings ne'er remember
Apollo's summer look;
But with a sweet forgetting,
They stay their crystal fretting,
Never, never petting
About the frozen time.
Ah! would 'twere so with many
A gentle girl and boy!
But were there ever any
Writhed not at passed joy?
The feel of not to feel it,
When there is none to heal it
Nor numbed sense to steel it,
Was never said in rhyme.
Can death be sleep, when life is but a dream,
And scenes of bliss pass as a phantom by?
The transient pleasures as a vision seem,
And yet we think the greatest pain's to die.
How strange it is that man on earth should roam,
And lead a life of woe, but not forsake
His rugged path; nor dare he view alone
His future doom which is but to awake.
John Keats (31 oktober 1795 – 23 februari 1821)
Portret van John Keats in Rome, kort voor zijn dood in 1821, door zijn vriend Joseph Severn
Zie voor nog meer schrijvers van de 31e oktober ook mijn vorige blog van vandaag en zie eveneens het In Memoriam Harry Mulisch
31-10-2010 om 21:06
geschreven door Romenu
Tags:Nick Stone, Joseph Boyden, Bruce Bawer, John Keats, Romenu