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Roberto Bolano (1953 – 2003)


Chilean novelist, short story writer, and poet.
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Roberto Bolano
Literature is a vast forest and the masterpieces are the lakes, the towering trees or strange trees, the lovely eloquent flowers, the hidden caves, but a forest is also made up of ordinary trees, patches of grass, puddles, clinging vines, mushrooms and little wildflowers.
Bolano quotes
He began to think about semblance, as Ansky had discussed it in his notebook, and he began to think about himself. He felt free, as he never had in his life, and although malnourished and weak, he also felt the strength to prolong as far as possible this impulse toward freedom, toward sovereignty. And yet the possibility that it was all nothing but semblance troubled him. Semblance was an occupying force of reality, he said to himself, even the most extreme, borderline reality. It lived in people's souls and their actions, in willpower and in pain, in the way memories and priorities were ordered. Semblance proliferated in the salons of the industrialists and in the underworld. It set the rules, it rebelled against its own rules...it set new rules.
Bolano
The secret story is the one we'll never know, although we're living it from day to day, thinking we're alive, thinking we've got it all under control and the stuff we overlook doesn't matter. But every single damn thing matters! Only we don't realize. We just tell ourselves that art runs on one track and life, our lives, on another, and we don't realize that's a lie.




Bolano Roberto quotes
I was imprisoned in Concepción for a few days and then realeased. They didn't torture me, as I had feared; they didn't even rob me. But they didn't give me anything to eat either, or any kind of covering for the night, so I had to rely on the goodwill of other prisoners, who shared their food with me. In the small hours I could hear them torturing others; I couldn't sleep and there was nothing to read except a magazine in English that someone had left behind. The only interesting article in it was about a house that had once belonged to Dylan Thomas. … I got out of that hole thanks to a pair of detectives who had been at high school with me in Los Ángeles…
Bolano Roberto
That night when he went back to his hotel, he wept for his dead children and all the other castrated boys, for his own lost youth, for those who were young no longer and those who died young, for those who fought for Salvador Allende and those who were too scared to fight.
Roberto Bolano quotes
About happiness he said not a word, I suppose because he considered it something strictly private and perhaps, how shall I say, treacherous or elusive.
Roberto Bolano
One day I heard that The Eye had left Mexico. I wasn't surprised that he hadn't said good-bye. The Eye never said good-bye to anyone. I never said good-bye to anyone either.
Bolano Roberto quotes
?Cómo reconocer una obra de arte? ?Cómo separarla, aunque sólo sea un momento, de su aparato crítico, de sus exégetas, de sus incansables plagiarios, de sus ninguneadores, de su final destino de soledad? Es fácil. Hay que traducirla.
Bolano
Darling, Juan de Dios Martínez would say to her sometimes, sweetheart, love, and in the darkness she would tell him to be quiet and then suck every last drop from him- of semen? of his soul? of the little life he felt, at the time, remained to him? They made love, at her express request, in semidarkness.
Bolano Roberto
Literature was a vast minefield occupied by enemies, except for a few classic authors (just a few), and every day I had to walk through that minefield, where any false move could be fatal, with only the poems of Archilochus to guide me. It’s like that for all young writers. There comes a time when you have no support, not even from friends, forget about mentors, and there’s no one to give you a hand; publication, prizes, and grants are reserved for the others, the ones who said “Yes, sir,” over and over, or those who praised the literary mandarins, a never-ending horde distinguished only by their aptitude for discipline and punishment — nothing escapes them and they forgive nothing.
Roberto Bolano
We never stop reading, although every book comes to an end, just as we never stop living, although death is certain.




Roberto Bolano quotes
It's strange how things happen, Mauricio Silva, known as the Eye, always tried to escape from violence even at the risk of being considered a coward, but the violence, the real violence, can't be escaped, at least not by us, born in Latin America in the 1950s, those of us who were around twenty years old when Salvador Allende died.
Roberto Bolano
If I were to say what I really think I would be arrested or shut away in a lunatic asylum. Come on, I am sure that it would be the same for everyone.
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