Nomadics

Meanderings & mawqifs of poetry, poetics, translations y mas. Travelogue too.

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Jörg Fauser

July 16th, 2014 · 1 Comment · Literature, Translation, Uncategorized

On this day, back in 1987, my old friend the German writer Jörg Fauser died, hit by a car. There isn’t much available in English, but check here & here. Way back when — very early 70s — I translated bits & pieces of his prose for underground magazines, but have no copies or docs of all that left. Like Jörg all his life, I was a beat-inspired Burroughs-devotee wanderer in those days. Below, a German-language video of a TV appearance late in his career, & beneath that an English-language review of his crime novel, The Snowman:

 


From LIBIDISSI’s hip randomness it’s a big step up to THE SNOWMAN (Bitter Lemon Press, 249pp), which appeared in Germany in 1981 and took twenty years to make it into English. It seem that the author, Jörg Fauser lived the life of his central character, right up to his untimely death wandering onto a motorway and right into the path of a truck. Our fictional anti-hero here is Siegfried Blum, the ultimate loser-adventurer. His is a soul attracted by pretty much everything in this life that nice people warn against. We meet him first in Malta, close to forty years old, trying to sell a stash of Danish pornographic magazines. Just before the local cops eject him from their Mediterranean patch he chances upon a lovely big load of cocaine. READ ON! The source of this book’s considerable charm is the good, well actually pretty bad, Herr Blum, and upon his capacity to court disaster. All of which gives a dark tale of paranoia and life in the underworld a comic edge; just enough oblique humour to cause a reader to smile at this rag-tag life of ours and its underworld vicissitudes.

The Book

Fauser, Jörg: The Snowman / translated by Anthea Bell. – London : Bitter Lemon Press, 2004. – 249 pages ISBN 1-904738-05-2 Original title: Der Schneemann (German)

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