By Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer
"If Italo Calvino determined to make one among his invisible towns noticeable, the outcome could glance anything like Pfeijffer's Genoa." — Benjamin Moser
An absolute pleasure to learn, La Superba, winner of the main prestigious Dutch literary prize, is a Rabelaisian, stylistic tour-de-force a few author who turns into trapped in his stroll at the wild facet in mysterious and unique Genoa, centering at the tales of migration and immigration, felony and unlawful, telling the tale of recent Europe. half migrant tale, half perverse trip advisor, La Superba is a totally postmodern ode to the mind's eye that lovingly describes the labyrinthine and magical urban that Pfeijffer calls domestic: Genoa, Italy, the town referred to as l. a. Superba for its good looks and wealthy history.
Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer (b. 1968), poet, dramatist, novelist, popular within the Netherlands as a grasp of language, is the single two-time winner of the Tzum Prize for "the most pretty sentence written in Dutch" (including one in La Superba!).
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Within the first example as a stylistic gadget, after all, sketched with the 36 Ilja Leonard Pf eijf f e r tough sprezzatura that characterizes my writing. yet within the moment example, it’s precise, too. I’ll provide you with an instance: Vico Amandorla could make me so satisfied. It’s a mere alleyway that runs from Vico Vegetti to Stradone Sant’Agostino. It’s a brief stretch, and also you don’t stumble upon whatever of any significance alongside the best way. The alleyway isn’t even beautiful, no less than no longer within the traditional demeanour. basic, gruesome previous homes and basic, stinky outdated trash. however the alley curves up the hill like a snake. a bit previous woman struggles uphill within the other way. The alley is basically too steep, equipped wrongly centuries and centuries in the past or simply sprung into life in a really awkward demeanour. The alley is unnecessary, too. you return out too a ways down, lower than the Piazza Negri. with a purpose to be there, at San Donato, it’s far better to simply take Vico Vegetti downhill after which flip correct alongside through San Bernardo. That’s quicker and easier. And so one can be within the greater a part of the Stradone Sant’Agostino, at Piazza Sarzano, it’s a lot speedier and less complicated to stick with a similar Vico Vegetti within the different path, earlier the Facoltà di Architettura directly to Piazza Negri. All of this makes me more than pleased. after which the pavement. This alley isn’t paved with the massive blocks of grey granite you get all over the place in Genoa, yet with cobblestones as titanic as a fist. You can’t stroll on them. There’s a strip of navigable street laid with slender bricks on their aspects. 1/2 them have sunk or come free. There hasn’t been any upkeep right here because the early heart a while. after which that identify. Who on this planet wouldn’t are looking to walk alongside Vico Amandorla? It’s a reputation that smells like a promise, as smooth as marzipan, as mature as liquor in forgotten casks, within the cellar of a remote monastery the place the final monk died two decades 37 LA S UPERBA in the past one afternoon with an blameless child’s prayer on his lips within the cloister gardens, within the shadow of an almond tree, as satisfied as a guy after a wealthy dinner with pricey buddies. Say the identify quietly when you are afraid and also you won’t be afraid anymore:Vico Amandorla. From Piazza Negri you could stroll, in the course of museum starting hours, in the course of the cloister gardens of Sant’Agostino to Piazza Sarzano and the town partitions. The passage in the course of the cloister is triangular, surely as an architectonic compromise with unheard of topographical situations. the top issues towards the tower, that's sprinkled with colourful mosaics that conflict with the stern and sober grey of the cloister. What’s the assertion? What needs to the priests who wore away the pavement of the cloister passage with their footsteps have inspiration on the sight in their personal festive tower? That it was once Mardi Gras open air? That the grey existence within the cloister clashed with that course upwards to heaven, a direction as garish and variegated as a rocket, able to be fired in order that it might probably burst out right into a cascade of colours?