Sunday, March 11, 2012

Good Book

Niki: The Story of a Dog (New York Review Books Classics)
The Amazon blurb says "The story of Niki, an ordinary dog, and the Ancsas, a no less ordinary couple, is an extraordinarily touching, utterly unsentimental parable about caring, kindness and the endurance of love" 
My brother knows how infatuated I am with Claire and Nobu and sent me this wonderful book, Niki- the story of a dog which I am now reading. I'm particularly enjoying passages where author Tibor Dery describes the dog's movements, which I of course picture with Nobu and Claire in my mind's eye:

"She began to bark, and then to rush dancing in wild circles over the lawn in front of the house. One minute the white body was extended until her belly almost brushed the ground as she ran; the next, doubled up like a cat arching its back, she frisked around the human pair at a mad speed, as if to enclose them forever in a magic circle."

As you can see, this writer uses eloquent prose.

And on another page: "It was as if her muscular, quivering little body were constantly being launched and relaunched in the air on springs of gaiety. She would bound like a ball onto any object she coveted, her muscles regulated like the parst of some finely adjusted mechanism and her heart full of a tigerish boldness."

I haven't got very far into the book, but I also really like the analysis of why we find so much delight in dogs, what they mean to us and why or how they steal our hearts. This next passage reminds me strongly of Nobu in these first three months of his time with us:

 "However commonplace the shapes in which it may become incarnate, health always has a strong, attractive influence on man. ...the charm of youth reinforced that condition of health which, even by itself is so seductive; a period, in short, when what pleases us is precisely that quality which is , in reality, still wanting, to wit the imminent perfection fo body and mind. The awkward and exaggerated movements which sometimes miss their aim and make us smile; the avid curiosity which send the nose questing into everything, but ready to be withdrawn with a sneeze of alarm; the awkwardness, clumsiness, excessive freedom sometimes manifest and all symbolic of the strength and suppleness to come - all these things compose a spectacle so reassuring that even experience and embittered age may well see in it a denial of its pessimistic prophesyings."

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