Excerpt from Watermark. I always adhered to the idea that God is time, or at least that His spirit is. Perhaps this idea was even of my own manufacture, but now I. The poet Joseph Brodsky was born in Leningrad in and expelled from his homeland in , after which he settled in the US. Perhaps it. Brodsky, a survivor of the Gulag, went to Venice in search of love. He returned every winter for 17 years.

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With my eyes shut I beheld a tuft of freezing seaweed splayed against a wet, perhaps ice-glazed rock somewhere in the universe, oblivious to its location. At any rate, objects don’t ask questions: In the end, there’s always this city. Inanimate by nature, hotel room mirrors are even further dulled by having seen so many.

Return to Book Page. Small world, and the longer you live, no man or jossph makes it larger. Perhaps I was simply being impolite, as the author wasn’t wayermark local. Or else take this as propaganda for Venetian boutiques, which do extremely brisk business in low temperatures.

Collected Poems in English.

Watermark: An Essay on Venice by Joseph Brodsky – review

And that’s why water takes this answer, twists it, wallops and shreds it, but ultimately carries it by and large intact off into the Adriatic. But the headache is crowned with an awtermark apprehension, not to say fear, that what lies in store for the city is the fate of Atlantis. It is written in small, maybe two page chapters.

For this is the city of the eye; your other faculties play a faint second fiddle.

In winter you wake up in this city, especially on Sundays, to the chiming of its innumerable bells, as though behind your gauze curtains a gigantic china teaset were vibrating on a silver tray in the pearl-gray sky. When the eye fails to find beautyalias solaceit commands the body to create it, or, failing that, adjusts itself to perceive virtue in ugliness. English Choose a language for shopping.


A while ago I saw somewhere a photograph of a wartime execution. Not because they were hard to read, but because they were so full of thoughts, reflections, and beauty.

Watermark: An Essay on Venice by Joseph Brodsky – review | Books | The Guardian

A vague smile of recognition on the face of a hotelier or jooseph trattoria proprietor didn’t count; nor could anyone be deceived by the clothes I’d purchased locally. So I never slept, let alone sinned, in a cast-iron family bed with pristine, crisp linen, embroidered and richly fringed bedspread, cloudlike pillows, and small pearl-encrusted nrodsky above the headboard.

Likewise, disappearance of the beloved, especially a gradual one, causes grief no matter who, and for what peripatetic reason, is actually in motion. Pages with related products. The plane was jammed with Italians employed by Ford and Chrysler and going home for Christmas.

This article is a selection from our Smithsonian Journeys Travel Quarterly Venice Issue Discover Venice anew, from its rich history and many cultural quirks to its delightful, present-day customs and excursions. Most likely because this part of the Canal Grande was better lit. Because one is finite, a departure from this place always feels final; leaving it behind is leaving it forever. Nights here are low on nightmaresjudging of course by literary sources especially since nightmares are such sources’ main fare.

At any rate, as a subject for nostalgia this childhood hardly qualified. She was positively stunning, and when subsequently she’d fallen for the worst possible dimwit on the periphery of our circle, some highly paid dolt of Armenian extraction, the common response was amazement and anger rather than jealousy or manly regret.


This is, I suppose, an extreme view, but I am a Northerner. Perhaps this idea was even of my own manufacture, but now I don’t remember. After a two-week stayeven at off-season ratesyou become both broke and selfless, like a Buddhist monk.

Pero no importa, porque B.

The City Nobel Laureate Joseph Brodsky Called Paradise | Travel | Smithsonian

Then my Ariadne vanished, leaving behind a fragrant thread of her expensive was it Shalimar? Get to Know Us. Had she been even an avowed Fascist, I think we would have lusted after her no less. Comment on this Story. It is a mixture between a lyrical chant, an analy He is buried there. Subsequently, I was told, she divorced the man and married a U.

This of course owes to the local topography, to the streetsnarrow, meandering like eelsthat finally bring you to a flounder of a [campo] with a cathedral in the middle of it, barnacled with saints and flaunting its Medusa-like cupolas. Unwittingly, you take your cue from it, especially if, like it, you’ve got no company. To ask other readers questions about Watermarkplease sign up.

The City Nobel Laureate Joseph Brodsky Called Paradise

Venice is, of course, the city of canals, waterways, gondolas and water. And in the final analysis, the eye is not so wrong, if only because the common purpose of everything here is to be [seen]. Why it should have happened here, I have no idea. It was a mine of heavy porphyry in a state of abandonment, in a state of perpetual evening, with oils obscuring its ores; the silence here was truly geological.