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By Michael Hofmann

Set in Bonn, the capital urban of postwar Germany, follows subtle idealist Keetenheuve after he returns to Germany following his self-imposed exile, as his front into politics ends up in his downfall.

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There’s an eyeful. ” The lobbyist left the bathroom, adjusted his cock, nihil humanum, and so forth. He rejoined the opposite lobbyists of their com­ partment on the entrance of the carriage, a guy between males. “Bit at the faded facet. ” “Who cares. ” “Rumble, fumble, tumble. ” “Spent too lengthy beneath. ” Wagalaweia. the lady got here in a floating costume, an angel of the road, an evening angel in a floating evening dress, lace brushed the airborne dirt and dust, snot, and grime of the varnished hall, nipples, complete buds rub­ bing opposed to the lace, the toes tittupping in dainty slippers, laced with satin ribbons, Salomes toes like white doves, the toenails lacquered crimson, the lady used to be nonetheless part asleep, moody, sulky, plenty of ladies wore sulky expressions on their lovely china dolls’ faces, it used to be the style for ladies to be sulky, in her throat she felt her smoker’s tickle, the boys watched because the woman, tittupping, lacquered, long-legged, lovely and sulky, went to the little ladies’ room. fragrance tickled their noses and min­ gled in the back of the door with the lobbyist’s regular intake of bocks the former evening— he wasn’t one on whom hops and malt have been wasted. “Nice case you’ve acquired there. actual diplomat’s accent. Like it’s simply come from the overseas Ministry of the Reich. Black purple and gold stripe and all. ” “Black pink and mustard, we used to name it. ” 56 Wolfgang Koeppen Wagalaweia. The Rhine used to be now wending its means among flat beds, a winding silver ribbon. far away hills arced up out of the early morning haze. Keetenheuve breathed within the light air and straightaway felt unhappy. Chambers of trade and journey oper­ ators defined the realm because the Rhine Riviera. A hothouse cli­ mate flourished within the basin among the hills; the air stag­ nated over the river and its banks. Villas stood beside the water, roses have been bred, prosperity strode in the course of the parkland wielding hedge clippers, gravel crunched crisply less than the pensioners light-weight sneakers, Keetenheuve might by no means subscribe to their ranks, by no means personal a house the following, by no means trim or breed roses, the nohiles, Rosa indica, which positioned him in brain of Erysipelas traumaticum, religion healers have been at paintings right here, Germany used to be one huge public hothouse, Keetenheuve took in infrequent plant life, grasping, curious crops, immense phalluses like chim­ ney stacks filled with billowing smoke, blue-green, red-yellow, poisonous, however it was once a fertility with no formative years and sap, it was once all putrid, all historic, the growths swelled, however it was once all Elephantiasis arabum. Engaged, it acknowledged over the door deal with, and at the different facet the woman used to be peeing—prettily, sulkily— over the tracks. Jonathan quick, the dean of St. Patricks in Dublin had taken a seat among Stella and Vanessa, and used to be indignant through their corporality. In previous Berlin, Keetenheuve had identified one Dr. Forelle. Forelle had had a normal perform in a tenement block in marriage ceremony. He used to be squeamish approximately our bodies, for many years he have been engaged on a psychoanalytical research of rapid, and at evening he could line his entrance door bell with cot­ ton wool, in case he was once known as out to a start.

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