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La Piccioletta Barca - Issue 16

The inevitable shame of not smelling smoke anymore

In the past weeks I have been smelling the promise of blooming flowers. The smell is that of daffodils, the image is that of rosebushes my grandmother planted in front of her veranda and the idea is that of a young woman in a trench coat, leaning on the April wind, laughing. Sweet, rich, easy. So easy.

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Margit

It was like a boat – my grandmother would say of the house in which she spent the Christmas of 1944. In fact, the whole city felt like a boat; at least this is what Jan-Erik told them. Jan-Erik came from Sweden as a volunteer for the Red Cross.

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Eszter Bencsik

Eszter Bencsik

I’m called Eszter and the task of rendering anything to this name seems like a sabotage – it’d have the well-known divine ambitions of creating a self. This is no good: I wake up every morning hoping to be converted either to Roman Catholicism (although trinitarianism was a reckless move) or to Shia Islam, and I definitely don’t want to put God off the project. Besides, I feel deeply humbled by the power of time which makes any self-definition futile, ridiculous even. So, I shan’t make an attempt. I will instead write about all that renders such an introduction unavailing.

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