mercredi 17 février 2010

In The Air, by Ariel Wagner-Parker

Ariel Wagner-Parker vient de publier un recueil de chroniques et de textes sous le titre In The Air, aux éditions Le Phare (Luxembourg). Voici une page de ce livre, elle est consacrée à Hammamet :
“…de blanches nations en joie” (Rimbaud)

The beach is stiller than usual. The late-afternoon breeze has stayed away and the giant sail of the hotel boat hangs becalmed from its mast.
The beach warden in his official shirt and blue trousers sits hunched on the edge of a stand of stacked surfboards, hands loosely clasped, vaguely surveying his domain.
A little way out, young windsurfers alternate between shaky vertical and horizontal tangle. Further out, water-skiers plough the sea into wide curving furrows, scattering seeds of white spray in their wake.
A motor-boat tears through the water towing a yellow banana with its four shrieking riders. The banana suddenly rolls over, pitches them squealing into the sea. A hush as the motor cuts out, the driver watching while they haul themselves back on board, laughing and spluttering. Then off again, tearing and shrieking.
The little group of people waiting for a pedalo breaks up and reforms as boats become free. Each new pair of pedallers sets off strongly, legs pumping in rhythm.
Of the people in the water, only a boy and girl are actually swimming, side by side, dreamily, straight out to sea. Near the edge, a German couple bat a pink plastic ball at each other, stretching and aiming with great concentration. The regular putt…putt is punctuated with grunts and little squeals of “ach, nein!”. A woman cuddles a tiny girl to her, the little legs wound round her back, hugging her up out of reach of the waves with a lot of laughing and splashing. Two elderly Italians are waist-deep in conversation, their expressive, slow-motion gestures. Their glittering ladies stand watching them, bangled arms akimbo, a marine cocktail-party. A pair of young lovers kiss long and slow, feet just touching the sea-bed.
Everyone else is horizontal, a few reading, most inert, head bent right or left, avoiding the eye of the sun.
The breeze finally puts in an appearance, teasing up the sea. The giant sail begins to flap indolently and the putt…putt of the Germans’ ball becomes irregular as the wind joins in their game. The sunbathers start to get restive, stretching arms, looking round at each other, then clambering to their feet, brushing at sand, gathering up belongings and wandering off to bar or pool.
The sea is abandoned to the windsurfers with their ups and downs and the sand to the scudding ants.
Two old Arabs climb slowly down the steps from the white hotel, take up spade and bucket and set about the work of nurturing the olives, laurels and infant palms that pass for a garden.

(Hammamet, 1992)

5 commentaires:

Pier Paolo a dit…

Très beau, cher Jalel, le dernier paragraphe est particulièrement beau. Amicalement.

Jalel El Gharbi a dit…

Oui, cher Pier, c'est ce dernier paragraphe qui donne à tout le texte son sens. Cela me fait penser à un poème à chutte.

olfa a dit…

il y a un réalisme saisissant dans ce beau texte,connaissant les plages Tunisiennes dans les zones touristiques on s-y croirait presque!
j'aime le texte d'autant plus que c'est en Anglais,mais malheureusement je ne connais pas cet écrivain et je trouve pas un site pour mieux le connaitre.

Jalel El Gharbi a dit…

Olfa, regarder dans le site de Guy Wagner (dans mes liens), sinon elle écrit dans la revue Kulturissimo que je peux vous passer.
Bien à vous

olfa a dit…

merci beaucoup j'irai voir.