Thursday, 24 December 2009

Footprints on snow

photograph by Sian Thomas, © 2009
"To love with all one's soul and leave the rest to fate, was the simple rule she heeded. 'Vot zapomni' -- now remember -- she would say in conspiratorial tones as she drew my attention to this or that loved thing in Vyra -- a lark ascending the curds and whey sky of a dull spring day, heat lightning taking pictures of a distant line of trees in the night, the palette of maple leaves on brown sand, a small bird's cuneate footprints on the new snow. As if feeling that in a few years the tangible part of her world would perish, she cultivated an extraordinary consciousness of the various time marks distributed throughout our country place. She cherished her own past with the same retrospective fervour that I do now her image and my past. Thus, in a way, I inherited an exquisite simulacrum -- the beauty of intangible property, unreal estate..."

-- from 'Speak, Memory' by Vladimir Nabokov

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