Goderdzi Chokheli’s literary world as an unveiled secret grew in between the visible and invisible, actual and dreamy, real and mythical. The world has opened for him. And now the writer tries to share this secret with others. With incredible mercy and simplicity he sets up in the reader an inner readiness to make us believe in the greater; In the smaller, in the eternal and in the impermanent – the divine in a human. Characters of the novel – Human Sadness , the Chokhelis from Gudamakari, are strange people who dream of building a common family house. They have a gatherer of sorrows-Gamikhardai. One day, they carry all the sorrows gathered by Gamikhardai to an old man in a white nabadi on the top of the hill, in the hope of making them disappear. The old man chooses one of them-the universal sorrow of the approaching End of the World...
‘– ...What is life?
– Life is sadness, sweet sadness of being a human
– And death?
– Death is also sadness, sadness of unbeing a human.’
Translated into English by Natalia Bukia-Peters and Victoria Field
‘If you haven’t got the time, don’t start reading.’
‘I’m writing about the forgotten Gudamakari Gorge. For a long time, I’ve wanted to write a novel about the people from Gudamakari, but I haven’t been able to start for a while. However, I’m only twenty five and I’ve only been writing for three years. But it’s felt like three centuries have gone by rather than three years and I still haven’t been able to write something appropriate about Gudamakari.
Until now, I’d thought that it would be a big book about the Gudamakari Gorge with lots of stories in it. But no, that wasn’t right! There’s definitely something is wrong with me. I don’t look at people in the same way I did three years ago. Now every person seems to me to embody stories and I look for names for all of them. For example if I meet you somewhere and you start talking to me, I’ll immediately imagine that you are a story and will find a name for you. I don’t know what the reason is for this. At first, it was only Gudamakari people who seemed to me to be stories, but now, whoever it is, whatever nationality, I think they are a story. If up until today it was only the Gudamakari Gorge that was a book full of strange stories, now I think that the earth is a huge book, illuminated by the sun and moon, where lots of living stories are walking. Oh, you can’t imagine what a splendid book it is, can you? The stories themselves erect monuments to good stories, an invisible creator’s hand writes and erases in this book. I wish I knew what’s happening to me. I’m now imagining that the earth is a page in the book with the title of ‘Universe’. I wish I knew where to find that blessed writer whose hand is writing this great book. Or where to find the beginning of this book, or the end. Or, perhaps, it has neither of these. The earth is its one and only page and Gudamakari Gorge and perhaps others are the subtitles of many short stories.’
‘Who am I?’
‘Perhaps I am a story too.’
‘But what have I got to do with the stories around me?’
‘Do you know what I want?’
‘When I told you that I wanted to write a story about Gudamakari, well, just let me get on and write it.’
‘Perhaps you can’t imagine how I suffer. I cannot not write it but as to what to write, how to write, well, the thing is that I will write anyway, I won’t miss anything, but I find it difficult to begin. Perhaps the creator also found it hard to begin when he started writing the book of the universe book. I want to begin in exactly the way he did but never finish. I want to speak about everything as I see it and experience it. Don’t get angry with me if I don’t follow any order in my book. Order is not my business at all, it depends on the stories, and they have an odd habit of not asking me about anything.’... (See PDF)
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