The end of winter


It isn’t winter in Australia, but we can’t resist this section from Laszlo Krasznahorkai’s extraordinary Seibo There Below, a reading experience unlike any other:

Winter has come to an end in the monastery, the cold is for the most part behind them: the uplifting memory of the ango meditation lasting three and a half months, but also that of their eternal daily torments, the biting cold, the heavy snowfalls, the numbing frosts, the icy winds; their hearts are filled with joy, they can now stand in between the choka at dawn and the peal of the evening bells, immersed in the beauty of the enormous magnolia tree behind the hondo, they can see how life begins to take shape on the early-blossoming trees, as the first buds appear on the plum-tree’s branches, how the morning is evermore bounteous, if they open their windows upon rising with the humming of birds…

Laszlo Krasznahorkai , Seiobo There Below  (New Directions 2008) p. 69

4 thoughts on “The end of winter

  1. This book sounds more and more like a must-read each time I see a snippet about it. Have you read Satantango? I thought it was an extraordinary book, one that haunted my dreams for a couple weeks. Seibo sounds exceptional too, but in a different way to Satantango…that quote is beautiful.

  2. I haven’t read Santantango but I plan to. Seiobo is indescribable – I’ve just finished it and I feel as if I have to let it sift down inside me before I can say anything at all about it.

  3. The winter in America and Europe seems totally over the top this year. And here we’re having a summer that gievs us something different every day. Of course, there’s no such thing as climate change!

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