Friday, November 16, 2012

VN and me



One day, in the 1970s, in Switzerland, one young and famous poetess from the SU was received by Vladimir Nabokov, at his.
The damsel was in state of veneration, when talking with the great writer (whose all works were banned in his homeland, btw, nevertheless, she happened to read the works.)
VN asked her, “How do you find my Russian?”
“It’s the best,” she replied, with her voice vibrating.
“Really?” VN said, “And I believed it’s frozen strawberry.”
The conversation is a historical fact, taking place in the time, when I was oh so young, learning of the conversation later, much later, when reading one non-fiction, in the 1990s, the cursed 1990s (Confer: "Cursed Days," the book by Russian author Ivan Bunin) when personally I happened to survive, with no damage, but I keep on reckoning the time cursed, anyway, with one of reasons being that I didn’t live in Switzerland in the time when it became possible because I could not afford going there. However that may be, returning to the talk of literature, I’d like to say that remembering of the conversation, mentioned above, I realize I should title my first blog “Reading with Frozen Strawberry,” which is a superb allusion, but “Strawberry” sounds too notorious, and “Frozen Strawberry” sounds rightly intelligible not to everyone, to put it mildly, for me alone, strictly speaking. Besides, when beginning my first blog, I was eager for being as far from my homeland as possible, aloof in my thoughts, dreams and virtual life, and the title “Revue Blanche” sounded more unusual, meaningful, cosmopolitan and consonant to my new fandom, and subsequently more Wildean, which as such had and implied more things to my taste than Nabokov’s works, with the only novel Pale Fire worth the kind attention of my main personage, which last circumstance outweighed then, being above all now. 
I conclude: However VN looked and sounded in his lifetime, read the novel Pale Fire, anyway.


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Sunday, November 11, 2012

Vigel


Continuing the theme of the homosexual surrounding of the Russian great poet A. Pushkin and his time.




After Pyotr Chaadaev (1794-1856), Georges-Charles d’Anthès (1812-1895), and Faddey Bulgarin (1789-1859), with Chaadaev’s homosexual taste being only supposed...
...today, I am happy to introduce the next forgotten literary figure Filipp Vigel (1786-1856) Russian noble of Swedish extraction who served in the foreign ministry, and who was Russian first outstanding memoirist.

Filipp Vigel happened to be a pen-pal to some Russian famous poets. In 1823, when he was sent in the town of Kishinev as a vice-governor of Bessarabia, he wrote to Pushkin about the town which caused the plaintive tone:
Although my sins or rather my sin is great but not to such an extent that the fate could appoint this pit as my residence.”
His poetic message to Vigel, Pushkin concluded by the humorous verse hinting at the homosexual taste of his addressee:
As soon as I have free time, Ill come.
Glad being at your service--
with my poetry and prose and my all heart--
but, Vigel, have your mercy on my ass!”
In the same message, Pushkin recommended “three jolly young beaus” to Vigel “believing that the younger of them is fitter for the proper usage. NB: he’s a room-mate of brother Mikhail, and by night, they bugger each other unrestrainedly which may suggest some important conclusions, which I leave to your sophistication and discretion.”  


At present, Vigel's famous Notes are re-published. But the literary sources are scanty about his personal life and others of that ilk, that’s why this note is so short. More about Russian forgotten literary figures of my choice, read here: