Nov. 9th, 2009

starlady: A girl bent over a sailboat on a lake (build your own ship)
Valente, Catherryne M. The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making. New York: Feiwel & Friends (forthcoming).

It's not the first time I've posted about Cat Valente's works in general or about Circumnavigated in particular, but I now have the happy satisfaction of being able to say that the book is finished and that I have read all of it. Even better, CMV announced several weeks ago that the rights to Fairyland and its sequel have been acquired for a print publication, so those (like me) who love print books, as well as those who don't like reading fiction online, or who have never heard of this book, will have the chance to hold it in their hands. Yay!

Playmate of the moving seasons... )
starlady: (justice)
When the Berlin Wall fell, dear Frau Schubert,
I began dreaming migraines. Multilingual mi-
graines, no preservatives. Bulging freedom,
the excess weight of the united countries, be-
gun peering in through my windows. Its eye–
I wonder what it's thinking.
We have it all now, dear Frau Schubert. The
borders' invisible stitch. Impeccable tailored
fields. Close-cropped towns. A genetic crisis.
In the greenhouse, where I'm resting after
growing a novel, Newton's orange ripens.
–Ewa Lipska (translated from the Polish by Barbara Bogoczek and Tony Howard)

I wish I could say I remember when the Wall fell. Instead I remember watching Gorbachev eat Spam on TV as an example of glasnost (or was it perestroika? whose the hand that holds it? whose the hand that moulds it?) while my mother said that Spam tasted so bad he'd bomb us in revenge. Yeah, that was my mom.

I've seen some good points made about 1989 in the media--particularly that one set of revolutions got under way in Europe in 1989, while in China another was deferred, violently, for a generation or more--and these points are certainly valid, but I don't think they can diminish the fact that, while Ronald Reagan may have exhorted "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" it was the people of Berlin who actually did it themselves. And it was the people of Germany who defied world powers super and not-so-super (guess who didn't want reunification? Margaret Thatcher, that's who, among many others) who voted to reunify their country seven months later. I was saying to my dad that the fall of the Wall is one of the things I point to to justify my rather Whiggish view of history, and he countered that it was economic forces as much as anything that did it. He has a point, certainly, but I think so do I. Nothing is impossible, and a new world can come round as swiftly as a wall goes down--though, as George Packer points out completely correctly and brilliantly as usual, some things are rather improbable. But the Cold War ending was one of them. 


starlady: Raven on a MacBook (Default)

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