27 April 2015

Eugène Savitzkaya: Exquise Louise (2003)

Eugène Savitzkaya is a Belgian writer who has written many poetry books and novels. Exquise Louise is classed as one of Savitzkaya's novels, although it contains barely more than seventy pages, which are in quite big print with many white spaces: in the English-speaking world, this would be called a short story, although it is in fact more of a poem written in prose.

In 1992 Savitzskaya published the 90-page novel Marin mon cœur, which concerns his son. Exquise Louise is about his daughter. Or rather, he's describing an independent being with a power of her own to discover the life around her.

Louise is described teething, bathing in the River Ourthe, playing truant, with friends, playing in the garden, trying to capture a snail, and many other activities. Although not in anything like the prosaic language I use here, but a language imbued with wonder, the magic of the everyday discoveries of a child: Savitzkaya takes the ordinary and turns it into a thing of wonder.

This makes for an interesting read and I'm pleased that I came across this writer's work, although I didn't find it sufficiently enlightening to feel encouraged to actively seek out further books by him.

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