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The Librarian's Choice

Dear all,

with this heat and many of you heading to the beach covered in sun-cream, I cannot recommend books thick as encyclopedias.
Instead, I would like to present the last two slim and elegant jewels I brought from London for you:

Basho - Haïkus

    As a special tribute to a person within the Association who recently discovered his talent in writing beautiful haikus, I present Basho's Haikus.

    Haiku is a form of 17th century Japanese poem that has a fixed amount of syllables and consist of only three lines. It bring our focus to a seasonal detail in nature and evokes an emotion connected to this image.

A close Japanese friend assures me that Basho has the same standing in Japanese literature as Shakespeare to the English. I consider our library the richer for this addition. Take this slim book with you to the beach, read a three-line poem, and then lie back and dream...
Click on the picture to know more about the author.

Cavafy - Selected poems

    Konstantinos Kavafis is one of the most famous Greek poets and it gives me particular pleasure to share his work with you.
He lived 1863-1933 in Alexandria in a society that criminalized the longings he felt.

His historical poems revolve around event in Ancient Greek history with a cynical twist contrasting hypocrisy with dignity. His love poems are subtle, evocative, full of longing and regret.
Here is one of my favorite ones included in the book on the display table. I find it Haiku-like in its sensitivity.

Morning Sea

Let me stop right here. Let me, too, have a look at nature:
the morning sea and the cloudless sky,
both a luminous blue, the yellow shore, all of it
beautiful, and in such magnificent light.
Let me stop right here. Let me pretend this is actually
what I'm seeing (I really did see it, when I first stopped)
and not, here too, more of those fantasies of mine
more of those memories, those voluptuous illusions.

C.P.Cavafy's poem Ithaca, recited by Sir Sean Connery
and with music specially composed by Vangelis.
I wish you all an excellent summer
Your Librarian