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Numerous strange voices levels from Malaysia to Moscow and past in a suite of magical, otherworldly fiction from a preeminent, creative strength within the style.
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You see, I had been reading too much Stendhal. And the world is not aristocratic enough. ’ He dragged a barrel of cod into the corner. I laughed and enquired about Java Meier. ‘They’ve buried him,’ he said. ’ ‘You said this morning he was an Italian. ’ ‘That was what needed clearing up, in my view. ’ I asked a little impatiently. The fishmonger grew a little uneasy. He looked up from his barrel, sizing me up. ‘Oh yes, I’d say so. ’ He sounded disappointed. He loved to create an effect. ‘I mean, it was after that that he hanged himself.
Obstinately he resisted their efforts. That was one of the best days of his life. But then the procedure to admit him to an Institution for the Blind was speeded up. On the evening before the appointed day the blind man was in their home alone and set fire to it. His brothers returned unexpectedly early and put out the blaze. While doing so one of them could not contain his anger and began to yell at the blind man. He enumerated all the misfortunes they had endured on his account, omitting no cause of ignominy or occasion for anxiety but on the contrary exaggerating every single point.
And Lorge, while the servants jostled him, spoke into the air: ‘I’ve lost my sight. ’ Then his brother dismounted, and saw that he was very dirty and had grown thin and blind as well, and he fell upon his neck and wept over him. But that evening they sat together drinking and Lorge drank too; for now he no longer turned vicious. He told his brother everything that had happened to him, and when he came to the The Bavarian Stories (1920–1924) 43 point where the farmer gave him two servants for his farm, his brother got up and closed the windows.