By Elias Canetti
Auto-da-Fé, Elias Canetti's purely paintings of fiction, is a miraculous success that places him squarely within the ranks of significant ecu writers corresponding to Robert Musil and Hermann Broch. it's the tale of Peter Kien, a scholarly recluse who lives between and for his nice library. The destruction of Kien during the software of the illiterate, brutish housekeeper he marries constitutes the plot of the ebook. the simplest writers of our time were fascinated about the horror of the trendy world--one thinks of Kafka, to whom Canetti has usually been in comparison. yet Auto-de-Fé stands as a totally unique, unforgettable therapy of the trendy predicament.
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There, sieze the blinkers! An’ bake them up in brunstane pies For poor d — n’d Drinkers. 110 120 Fortune, if thou’ll but gie me still Hale breeks, a scone, an’ whisky gill, An’ rowth o’ rhyme to rave at will, Tak a’ the rest, An’ deal’t about as thy blind skill Directs thee best. indd 15 9/18/2012 3:33:44 PM 16 poems (kilmarnock, 1786) THE AUTHOR’S EARNEST CRY AND PRAYER, TO THE RIGHT HONORABLE AND HONORABLE, THE SCOTCH REPRESENTATIVES IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS Dearest of Distillation! last and best!
Cæsar But then, to see how ye’re negleket, How huff ’d, an’ cuff ’d, an’ disrespeket! L — d man, our gentry care as little For delvers, ditchers, an’ sic cattle; They gang as saucy by poor folk, As I wad by a stinkan brock. I’ve notic’d, on our Laird’s court-day,° An’ mony a time my heart’s been wae, Poor tenant bodies, scant o’ cash, How they maun thole a factor’s snash; He’ll stamp an’ threaten, curse an’ swear, He’ll apprehend them, poind their gear;° While they maun stan’, wi’ aspect humble, An’ hear it a’, an’ fear an’ tremble!
Guid faith! I doubt it. ° For Britain’s guid! for her destruction! Wi’ dissipation, feud, an’ faction! indd 9 140 150 160 170 9/18/2012 3:33:44 PM 10 poems (kilmarnock, 1786) luath Hech man! dear sirs! is that the gate, They waste sae mony a braw estate! Are we sae foughten and harass’d For gear to gang that gate at last! O would they stay aback frae courts, An’ please themsels wi’ countra sports, It wad for ev’ry ane be better, The Laird, the Tenant, an’ the Cotter! For thae frank, rantan, ramblan billies, Fient haet o’ them ’s ill hearted fellows; Except for breakin o’ their timmer, Or speakin lightly o’ their Limmer, Or shootin of a hare or moorcock,° The ne’er-a-bit they’re ill to poor folk.
Auto-da-Fé by Elias Canetti