Books with window seat

Photo: Camille Martin

         My last tour-by-train this fall will be to Bridge Street Books in Washington, DC, and Segue Reading Series in New York.
         This is the longest tour (by far) as I’m choosing to travel by train. Getting to DC will take a total of sixteen hours (interrupted by a rest-layover in New York). Even given the slower pace (and in reality, partly because of it), I’m finding that I much prefer to travel by train rather than plane.
         For one thing, I’ll have uninterrupted time to work on a couple of writing projects—an interview as well as an essay on the literariness of train travel, which I began to explore in a previous post on Fernando Pessoa.
         I’ll also continue readings that I started during my earlier trips, one of which is Bayamus & Cardinal Polatuo, two novels by Polish-British writer Stephen Themerson (with an introduction by Keith Waldrop). Come to think of it, maybe I should bring along some Kurt Schwitters, too, as a companion to this book, since Themerson and his wife, Franciszka, published his work in London.
         Another is Blaise Cendras, especially “La prose du Transsibérien et de la Petite Jehanne de France.” I can’t seem to locate my translation by Ron Padgett, but I have an en face by Dos Passos that seems quite good.
         The journey begins tomorrow morning at the entrance to the VIA Rail Station in Toronto, which is guarded by a mobile scare-owl. The pigeons nesting there are too smart to be tricked by the paper raptor twisting in the wind.

Photo: Camille Martin



Camille Martin

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