Lisa Corva

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Hold my gaze. And call me by your name.

Friday, 25 March 2011 @08:02

"I stopped for a second. If you remember everything, I wanted to say, and if you are really like me, then before you leave tomorrow, or when you’re just ready to shut the door of the taxi and have already said goodbye to everyone else and there’s not a thing left to say in this life, then, just this once, turn to me, even in jest, or as an afterthought, which would have meant everything to me when we were together, and, as you did back then, look me in the face, hold my gaze, and call me by your name."

(André Aciman)

Look at me.

I met André Aciman in Manhattan, on a winter evening between snowstorms (exactly as it happens in his last book, "Eight white nights"). We met at the café of Barnes & Noble, windows facing Union Square. But somehow, it felt like being oceans away, in the Caffè degli Specchi, in Trieste. Today’s words are from his book "Call me by your name" (Farrar, Straus & Giroux): a story of desire and enchantment. And reading it, you understand what you knew already: that only when we desire we really feel alive.


Not knowing when the dawn will come.

Friday, 18 March 2011 @07:29

"Not knowing when the dawn will come
I will open every door"

(Emily Dickinson)

I wonder when. I wonder when I’ll be loved again, embraced again, ever so tight. I wonder when hope will come, your mail will come, you will arrive. I wonder when I’ll see a new dawn in my life. What can I do, but leave the shutters open? And hope, for rain and bright sunshine.

Emily Dickinson almost always dressed in white. That’s the legend. And a legendary dress in Amherst, on display in her museum: made of cotton, high-necked, long sleeves, mother-of-pearl buttons. What they called a "wrapper" in the late 19th century: a house dress, because she very rarely left home. What would she wear today, writing poems on her laptop? A T-shirt and sweatpants? I'd rather imagine her in a H&M cotton dress bought on sale, and leggings; maybe because this is what I wear, at home. But I like the milky light of those mother-of-pearl buttons, shimmering like jewels.


For such gestures one falls hopelessly in love for a lifetime.

Friday, 11 March 2011 @08:53

"But look – he flicks his hand to the back of his neck. For such gestures one falls hopelessly in love for a lifetime".

(Virginia Woolf)

The way your smile just beams, the way you haunt my dreams…

(Can you put together, shamelessly, Virginia Woolf and a song by Ella Fitzgerald? Yes, you can. Because they both make me think about you – how I fell in love with you. How a little gesture changed my life, for ever. Thanks to Ella, and Virginia Woolf’s quote, from "The Waves")

Living as he now lived, was like reading a good book in a poor translation.

Friday, 4 March 2011 @08:47

"Living as he now lived was like reading a good book in a poor translation."

(Henry James)

I don’t need a new life, a new pattern, a new book. I just need a new translation for the story of my life.

"Portrait of a lady", by Henry James: one of my favourite books ever. But how I loved Jane Campion’s movie, leaving a door open for Isabel Archer, a new possibility to rewrite her life, to find a better translation for her eager need of love.

Lisa Corva

Yes, I write. Yes, I believe in the magic of words. That’s why you’ll find me here, every Friday: Lisa “globish”!

I believe in the magic of words, and I believe Piazza Unità in Trieste, where I was born, is the most romantic square in the world. (And yes, it’s in Italy, proudly facing the sea). I love roses in every form. And, of course, I do love my blog, expecially now that I can carry it around on my iPhone.