A Schoolboy's Diary and Other Stories by Robert Walser

By Robert Walser

A Schoolboy's Diary brings jointly greater than seventy of Robert Walser's unusual and beautiful tales, such a lot by no means sooner than on hand in English. beginning with a chain from Walser's first publication, "Fritz Kocher's Essays," the whole school room assignments of a fictional boy who has met a tragically early loss of life, this feature levels from sketches of uncomprehending editors, overly passionate readers, and dreamy artists to stories of devilish adultery, sexual encounters on a teach, and Walser's carrier in global warfare I. all through, Walser's careening, confounding, scrumptious voice holds the reader transfixed.

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And we stopped speaking crudely and awkwardly like greenhorns who think that you have to have the last word on everything and that speaking the truth is always permissible, which is nothing more than a way of excusing brutes and schoolteachers. That’s why we spoke in a refined kind of way, as best we could manage, for we cursed like demons, believe you me, but with enormous care and delicacy. ‘Dicky’ we said and ‘good old fellow’ and nothing about the wind which ended after us or about the floating coffin which was coming to an end with us, or the water which was without end.

I think so too,’ said the fishmonger in a monotone. ’ ‘If you frighten somebody it is usually harder to kill him, wouldn’t you say? He keeps a lookout, hears every leaf rustle, stops going into the wood where the thick branches are. ’ ‘Did you think I was? I’m not a dog. ’ ‘Yet this business has been on your mind all day long. ’ ‘I don’t understand you. I think you’re too keen to create an effect. ’ ‘The man whose warning led to what you call the murder? ’ ‘Yes, that leaves some points to be cleared up, or just one really.

For one of us – his name no longer carries any weight on this planet, it refers to nothing, though once it introduced a man who wasn’t all that fat, with red hair and two teeth missing and a faint talent for cooking – one of us, I say, now said something which we noted carefully and still recall many years afterwards, and I don’t intend to forget it today. On the contrary, I can still remember him standing up with his glass and walking up to the bulkhead and carrying the glass along and putting it on a small table as he said it, and doing so in such a way that it wasn’t quite certain whether he was putting much thought into it.

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