A Balcony in the Forest PDF/EPUB À A Balcony

A Balcony in the Forest PDF/EPUB À A Balcony



10 thoughts on “A Balcony in the Forest

  1. Geoff Geoff says:

    Lieutenant Grange is one of those poor dreamers like Walser, like Pessoa, like Eugene Eyestones even who have realized that happiness is the desire to be nothing, but who have been called by circumstances to be something in Grange s case, this something is a watchman in an enchanted forest above a world caught in a reverberating hesitation, anticipating a leap into complete catastrophe Grange the Dreamer finds himself alone on a train in the autumn of 1939 being taken deep into the Ardennes Lieutenant Grange is one of those poor dreamers like Walser, like Pessoa, like Eugene Eyestones even who have realized that happiness is the desire to be nothing, but who have been called by circumstances to be something in Grange s case, this something is a watchman in an enchanted forest above a world caught in a reverberating hesitation, anticipating a leap into complete catastrophe Grange the Dreamer finds himself alone on a train in the autumn of 1939 being taken deep into the Ardennes Forest along the French Belgian border but where he ends up exactly we might better call the garden of Klingsor s magic castle or we could as easily name it the Arden of As You Like It , or Poe s Domain of ArnheimThe garden like a lady fair was cut, that lay as if she slumbered in delight, and to the open skies her eyes did shut The azure fields of Heaven were sembled right in a large round, set with the flowers of light The flowers de luce, and the round sparks of dew that hung upon their azure leaves did shew like twinkling stars that sparkle in the evening blueand our good lieutenant is even given, through the logic blessing of a dream, his own Kundry Mona she is called, the wood spirit, rain nymph, naiad So Grange the Lonely finds himself utterly at home, with his three vague comrades and his mythic lover and his domain of magic woods that weep rain and bestow ancient light and exhale air that is scented with the timeless incense of lavender, wisteria, moss and leaf fall Snowfall throughout that empty winter only adds to the cloistered atmosphere of reverie Only one road must be watched only one inevitability delayed as the winter passes as Spring approaches and our dreamer is everunsettled from his idyl by encroaching lights and thunder emanating from the valleys an inhuman metallic clamor that vibrates the forest he finds himself conjuring ways to deny the manifest truth that the cruel world doesn t let dreamers sleep forever One must wake, and awakening is signaled by disturbances in the dream bright fissures are rent in the dream substance the illogical reality conjured in slumbering quickly becomes unstitched the world a sleeping mind weaves is invariably unwoven for there are no pleasant dreams without the tyrannical orders of the waking world with which to compare them A mythic forest, by definition unreal, must also be indifferent to human beings eternity doesn t bother itself with trifles and Grange is but a reclusive watchman on this magic mountain during this staggeringly brief period of months closing shut like the jaws of a wolf devouring a faun We dreamers here alive now know what happened in the Spring of 1940 The Phony War proved to be as phony and insubstantial as the flitting pictures projected onto a movie screen once the house lights have come up Oh but to remain asleep and dream through the horrors of history Oh to lie with our lovely nymph through all the bitter tears of time To be Parsifal, who stops the spear in mid flight before it strikes and releases our dear Kundry, dove now, freely into the bright air


  2. Vit Babenco Vit Babenco says:

    Straight away Julien Gracq emphasizes the irrationality of war and the novel begins as if the main hero is going to some wicked never never land A train for the Domain of Arnheim thought the lieutenant, a great Poe enthusiast, and as he lit a cigarette he leaned his head back against the serge upholstery so his gaze could follow the crest of the high, shaggy cliffs aureoled by the low sun.The beautifully baroque language of the book is in the outright contrast with the dire irreality of every Straight away Julien Gracq emphasizes the irrationality of war and the novel begins as if the main hero is going to some wicked never never land A train for the Domain of Arnheim thought the lieutenant, a great Poe enthusiast, and as he lit a cigarette he leaned his head back against the serge upholstery so his gaze could follow the crest of the high, shaggy cliffs aureoled by the low sun.The beautifully baroque language of the book is in the outright contrast with the dire irreality of everything that happens.Sometimes the beams crossing his uncurtained window wakened Grange during the night, like the lighthouse that had brushed across his panes on that Breton island where he had slept so badly he got up, leaned on the sill, and for a moment watched the strange columns of light slowly, warily wheeling in the winter sky then an image from his childhood reading occurred to him he remembered H G Wells sick Martian giants screaming their incomprehensible woes across the stupefied landscape.Nothing seems to be happening but the air is oversaturated with anxiety and apprehension And the uncertainty of the endless waiting begets the atmosphere of fatality.It is very interesting to compare A Balcony in the Forest withWeekend at Dunkirkby Robert Merle both novels boast identical aura of doom Everything that occurs, occurs the last time last hopes, last dreams, last desires, the last love How old are you he would ask her sometimes, stroking her eyebrows with his finger, staggered by her beauty, blinking as if into too bright a light while she laughed her throaty laugh and lightly ruffled his hair but he realized that his question had no meaning, that youth, here, had nothing to do with age she belonged to a fabulous species, like unicorns I found her in the woods, he mused, and a certain wonder touched his heart there was a sign upon her the sea had floated her to him on a stone slab he felt how precariously she was granted the waves that had brought her would take her back again.Human beings loathe war but their inhuman political leaders keep them warring


  3. Mariel Mariel says:

    I don t know if I ve ever read a book that is so much a Mariel kind of book as this one This means nothing to anyone but me I don t care This review is for me and anyone else like me All of the things that I squint view, the staring at lamps and suns squinting, too bright and spotty and unsustainable to find in everything else Julien Gracq would call it the unattainable sea in a shell I m listening as far away as I can All in my own language His was French, originally Not my language I don t know if I ve ever read a book that is so much a Mariel kind of book as this one This means nothing to anyone but me I don t care This review is for me and anyone else like me All of the things that I squint view, the staring at lamps and suns squinting, too bright and spotty and unsustainable to find in everything else Julien Gracq would call it the unattainable sea in a shell I m listening as far away as I can All in my own language His was French, originally Not my language Gracq was a schoolteacher in France My great grandparents were French schoolteachers, too Not to mention all of those prisoners of war I was born for this It could be a Mariel book that is so much a Mariel book that it is not so much any I was reminded to feel the outsideness at the same time that I recognized the soul drift I cannot love me and there s something about A Balcony in the Forest that I cannot really love Maybe that ll change later This is one of those books that turns a lonely walk outside at night into poetry The separateness The last line is that he lays down and pulls the blanket over his head and goes to sleep my kind of book The desire and the beautiful parts and the intimacy Man at war, man in love, man alone, man waits, man sleeps Another review says it is a beautiful book where nothing happens This is not nothing to me The stakes are the will to live and loveHer resemblance to a plant in the sun, her characteristic openness, her way of growing firm and straight within the grain of life, had straightened him out despite himself in her radiance, he was noashamed of his secret withdrawals than a tree in sunlight of its twisted branches There was only that strange sensation of falling free, that drifting nausea which became his vice, which he never mentioned to her, from which she remained excluded, and which was yet perhaps the essential thing about her Mona was the little girl beautiful that I don t give a fuck about The one that is in every novel ever, it feels like sometimes I die inside, a little, and lock myself out when this is the dream If it s in their heads and then it is on the pages What s so special about that I don t need permanent mystery of a mercurial French babe in the woods literally to egg on my longing Is it closeness I d feelbeing the hot on heels dog after the rabbit At least you can taste the blood in their mouths What do they want to do when they get them There is something lonely about what someone else finds romantic There s something dead about the only in dreams love like this If I can envy them this romanticism then it means a lot to me The innocent love just for them I didn t Mona didn t mean anything to me in her nakedness and kissing and childish petting ways It may not have been genuine I had no way to know other than this is what he wanted Why I do know about the nausea, though The mystery was a way to keep apart from the rest of everything else It is scary when you are going to lose the only fire you ever had to move Something like a solar eclipseThe world had gone to sleep like another Olivet, exhausted by fear and foreboding, intoxicated with anxiety and weariness, but the day had not disappeared with it there remained this cold, abundant light which survived all human caring and seemed to glow upon the empty world for itself alone this abandoned nocturnal eye that opened before its time and somehow seemed to be looking elsewhere It was still daytime here a strange daylight limbo laved by fear and desire, a barren brightness that did not warm the light of a dead moon I felt the in between The wanting the darkness to happen and opening yourself to it No one else is left and you can t taste the blood of the catch because there was no where to get at all Gracq must have meant for the dream to be the desire, all on its lone I have an idea I know what he s talking about here and it s still not all that solid to explain why it is so romantic It is so lonely to think about what s romantic to anyone else Unshared A Balcony in the Forest is lonely I know that I like to read books like this because I feel like this a lot.So I still suck at saying what all of this is but this is definitely one of those books, to its core That core is a sea in a sea shell Absolutely The right phrasing from me will never be the dreamed light on the bottom of the forest that I search for if it comes from inside it feels too outside But this is the kind of book I look for because it could be Maybe others look for it too Most of the time I feel like I m missing the point even mentioning this stuff But A Balcony in the Forest is nothing but that stuff I wasn t weird or stupid this time I ll call it my lunarcy Some books make me feel good about being like this and this one makes me feel hopeless about it Still, at home Mostly


  4. Το Άθχημο γατί του θενιόρ Γκουαναμίρου Το Άθχημο γατί του θενιόρ Γκουαναμίρου says:

    In October 1939, Lieutenant Grange is appointed in charge of a small fort, hidden in the Ardennes forest, near the French border with Belgium He goes to war, perhaps expecting death, and instead discovers a world where the possibility of a war seems highly unlikely In nature, while the seasons change, people in the neighboring village continue to live their peaceful lives, the few soldiers accompanying him become his friends, and on a rainy day, while walking down a forest path, he encounters In October 1939, Lieutenant Grange is appointed in charge of a small fort, hidden in the Ardennes forest, near the French border with Belgium He goes to war, perhaps expecting death, and instead discovers a world where the possibility of a war seems highly unlikely In nature, while the seasons change, people in the neighboring village continue to live their peaceful lives, the few soldiers accompanying him become his friends, and on a rainy day, while walking down a forest path, he encounters love This is the charming result that occurs when a surrealist decides to write realism The dreams are bound to reality and supply the mind and the senses with images, thoughts, feelings and ideas that otherwise would not be possible to be expressed But war is ante portas , ,1939 Grange ,, , , , , , , ,, ,,Hoyerswerda Bautzen, ,, , , , , , ,Grange,


  5. Lee Klein Lee Klein says:

    I love when this site leads to masterpieces previously unknown to me Stoner, most memorably, and a few others Now this one Sumptuous prose, never over the top as in The Opposing Shore, steady, flowing, so clear its perception verges on surrealistic swervy poetry Gracq might just be the supreme poet of anticipatory anxiety, and seculsion in a dense forest with the pulse of bombs on the horizon like heat lightning is therefore maybe his ideal setting As in The Opposing Shore, nothing much h I love when this site leads to masterpieces previously unknown to me Stoner, most memorably, and a few others Now this one Sumptuous prose, never over the top as in The Opposing Shore, steady, flowing, so clear its perception verges on surrealistic swervy poetry Gracq might just be the supreme poet of anticipatory anxiety, and seculsion in a dense forest with the pulse of bombs on the horizon like heat lightning is therefore maybe his ideal setting As in The Opposing Shore, nothing much happens, which is the point for ninety five percent of this as our man Lt Grange le focus of le novel s close third POV waits for the Germans to come through the forest near the Belgium border and raid the blockhouse in the trees where he and three subordinates are stationed There s a little forest sprite in this an innocent widowed proto hippie sexy child who might turn off folks turned off by male writers writing about sexy little sprites, but Mona worked for me because she emerged from the forest and seemed descended from the sexy little sprite in Undine, a myth I read a few months ago about a lady o the forest who s equal parts woman and brook It s gripping toward the end as the war early WWII, 1939 ramps up, but the prose is what happens in this one Let s just say that not in a long time have I thought about starting a book from the beginning as soon as I finished it Felt it was perfectly weighted, paced, perceived Can t recommend ithighly to anyone who appreciates it when tip top prose sans empty experimentation supports masterful evocation of a world and character theme forward propulsion Language in this seemed always at the level of Salter or Updike but with a surrealistic sheen that elevates it Ordered fourshort Gracq novels as a result


  6. Tony Tony says:

    What is there between the war and meLieutenant Grange asks himself near the end of this story He is not quite alone, this reflective soldier, assigned to a concrete bunker, with upstairs chalet, deep in the Ardennes forest There are the three comrades he commands and a convenient girlfriend We meet her, Mona, when mon lieutenant does, and it s a very cool first meeting Mona is sprite like Sadly, the author does not share her very much with the reader, who would like very much to know mor What is there between the war and meLieutenant Grange asks himself near the end of this story He is not quite alone, this reflective soldier, assigned to a concrete bunker, with upstairs chalet, deep in the Ardennes forest There are the three comrades he commands and a convenient girlfriend We meet her, Mona, when mon lieutenant does, and it s a very cool first meeting Mona is sprite like Sadly, the author does not share her very much with the reader, who would like very much to knowabout her, especially in her final scene where she is lying in bed, blond hair a mess, barefoot, dressed in jeans and her maid s shirt, reading a book But I digress.Stuff happens eventually, war stuff, but it was a slough for me to get there Grange had to light a cigarette on seemingly every page and observe things in a metaphorical fashion To wit The stone was like a pulpy feminine substance, its skin deep and sensitive, downy with all the subtle impressions of the air.Like that.At one point, Grange s commanding officer tells him, I have no objection to fighting the war with men who have found their own way of deserting And I suppose that s what this book is about What that did though, was to remind me of Going After Cacciatio, a much, much superior book about the same theme.Anyhow, we know that sometimes in Literature facially commonplace events can really be speaking about war, and that stories of war can really be tales of the human soul That s how it works.I thought of this when I read this profundity very near the end of this book all wounded men drag themselves toward a house.


  7. Nate D Nate D says:

    An unearthly stillness, a limbo, a lull Several seasons passed outside of time in a forest outpost at the edge of the world, yet about to be entirely overrun by history The Balcony In the Forest, perhaps channeling some of Gracq s own wartime experiences, follows a soldier appointed to a four man anti tank bunker on the French Belgian border in late 1939 Amidst interminable uncertainty and dreadful anticipation, he begins to fall in love with his mostly unpopulated natural surroundings, the m An unearthly stillness, a limbo, a lull Several seasons passed outside of time in a forest outpost at the edge of the world, yet about to be entirely overrun by history The Balcony In the Forest, perhaps channeling some of Gracq s own wartime experiences, follows a soldier appointed to a four man anti tank bunker on the French Belgian border in late 1939 Amidst interminable uncertainty and dreadful anticipation, he begins to fall in love with his mostly unpopulated natural surroundings, the mists and snows and fluttering foliage, but also his fellow dwellers out on the edge of civilzation and what use, a civilization foisting world war upon them Gracq was a surrealist, but he sticks to a strictly realistic course of events here Instead, it s in his perfectly formed language of supernatural natural beauty that he conveys the experience of a dream, of enchantment, of the feeling of sinking willingly into another world outside the one about to be torn apart by artillery shells


  8. [P] [P] says:

    I have felt, throughout the year, an intensifying fear, an increasing discomfort, a kind of claustrophobia, as though something terrible, something unavoidable, perhaps even fatal, was closing in on me A couple of days ago, this feeling reached an apex, and drove me out of the house around midnight, with no plan or direction in mind However, once outside a strange sort of calm came over me The streets were clear, the sky starless and raven black and the cool air was like clean linen against I have felt, throughout the year, an intensifying fear, an increasing discomfort, a kind of claustrophobia, as though something terrible, something unavoidable, perhaps even fatal, was closing in on me A couple of days ago, this feeling reached an apex, and drove me out of the house around midnight, with no plan or direction in mind However, once outside a strange sort of calm came over me The streets were clear, the sky starless and raven black and the cool air was like clean linen against my skin I lit a cigarette and, as I dragged on it, I watched the tip dancing in the dark like a firefly Then, out the corner of my eye I spotted a spider, suspended on its web a black jewel in the centre of an ornate crown I walked over to it, expecting to experience the usual grotesque fascination, the instinctive desire to crush, and yet, as absurd as it sounds, I was moved.I thought about leaving, about getting on a train, a hopefully deserted train, to nowhere in particular an attempt to outrun my existence But of course, I did not I went back inside and, with a lamentable reflexive cowardice, searched my shelves for a book that would comfort or speak to me in my present mood The one that stood out for me in this regard was A Balcony in the Forest by Julien Gracq Indeed, it begins with a man on a train, Lieutenant Grange, who, as he travels, feels as though he is leaving behind the world s ugliness Set in 1939, the ugliness of which Gracq writes, and which Grange wishes to avoid, is, of course, the second world war Yet for much of the novel the war is in the background, isa threat than a reality It is manifested in the sound of French soldiers coming from local houses, and is evident in the flowerbeds trampled under hobnailed boots This stretch through the fogbound forest gradually lulled Grange into his favorite daydream in it he saw an image of his life all that he had he carried with him twenty feet away, the world grew dark, perspectives blurred, and there was nothing near him but this close halo of warm consciousness, this nest perched high above the vague earth The primary focus is on Grange s mundane existence as the commander at a blockhouse in the Ardennes forest, the post to which the aforementioned train was taking him His days there are, we re told, pleasingly empty , which is to say that they are relaxing and mostly free from army activity He chats to the men under his command, he meets a woman, he wanders through the forest he, rather comically, considering the circumstances, sits in a garden chair, sips coffee, and plunges into a kind of dreamy beatitude It is as though he is on a long rustic holiday, slowly vegetating at one of the least sensitive nerve endings of the war s great body All of which might make A Balcony in the Forest sound tremendously dull however, although it is certainly low on high octane thrills, it features some of the most beautiful nature writing I have read and has a stately grace to it that I found compelling.Moreover, while WW2 is generally off stage in terms of action, it is still ever present in the mind of the reader, if not always the characters in fact, it dominates the book by its absence, and this is what gives it its emotional punch Everything that Grange does, specifically the way that he looks at and experiences the forest, is related to the war There are numerous references to the silence of his surroundings, for example, and one understands that this is unusual, is out of sync with the times, and cannot,importantly, last, for very soon the tanks and guns will shatter it Indeed, there is a overriding sense of the unreal The forest itself is described as being magical, endless and unconquerable For Grange it acts as a kind of fairy tale refuge, or forgotten wilderness , which is virtually cut off from the inhabited world This world, the inhabited world, is, one cannot forget, about to be thrust into bloody chaos.Before concluding, I should deal with Mona, for in the limited number of reviews of the novel on the internet she is cited as its biggest flaw She is introduced as a figure in the distance splashing from puddle to puddle , which sets the tone for all of her limited appearances When Grange catches up with her he likens her to, or even believes her to be, a rain sprite, emphasising her otherwordliness and, once again, the magic of the forest At various points she is described as childish, or child like, as well as puppyish and kittenish To some extent, I can understand certain readers irritation, for she is certainly not a rounded character she is a male fantasy, a down to fuck forest fairy However, what this kind of criticism overlooks is that it is Grange s perception of her, not the author s, and, as such, it is consistent with his frame of mind and the tone of the novel as a whole Further, no character in the book, not even the Lieutenant, is well developed they are all essentially one dimensional In this forest wilderness perched high above the Meuse it was as if they were on a roof and the ladder taken away I have read three of the four novels that Julien Gracq wrote, of which A Balcony in the Forest is the last, both in terms of its publication and my own relationship with his work Often, it is compared to his most acclaimed novel The Opposing Shore, which is itself compared to Dino Buzatti s The Tartar Steppe Yet while all three are about waiting for war, it differs from itswell known brothers in that they are principally concerned with impatience and disappointment The central characters in The Opposing Shore and The Tartar Steppe yearn for aexciting existence, while Grange wants quite the opposite he is happy to remain inactive, to be forgotten, overlooked, left alone This is a novel of avoidance, and the joys of isolation it is about hiding in enchantment, about finding, and clinging to, a haven of peace and tranquility, if only for a short time As such, it was, despite the shame I feel at my head in the sand tendencies, probably exactly what I needed and, looking at the unstable world around me, a world that appears to be violently haemorrhaging, it could be just what you need too


  9. Jeff Jackson Jeff Jackson says:

    Julien Gracq, damn This was some of the most beautiful prose I ve read in ages The story revolves around a French soldier stationed in the remote woods during the long run up to WWII There are plot elements about love and war, but the novel sidesteps all conventions and expectations to unfurl its own unusual tale It s a book thick with intoxicating atmosphere, moments filled equally with dread and wonder, grounded it reality but with a strong whiff of magick Anyone who s ever found themselv Julien Gracq, damn This was some of the most beautiful prose I ve read in ages The story revolves around a French soldier stationed in the remote woods during the long run up to WWII There are plot elements about love and war, but the novel sidesteps all conventions and expectations to unfurl its own unusual tale It s a book thick with intoxicating atmosphere, moments filled equally with dread and wonder, grounded it reality but with a strong whiff of magick Anyone who s ever found themselves marooned between situations and waiting for life to make a move, anyone who s ever found a way to comfortably embrace denial, will be able to relate A moving story about life during dreamtime


  10. S̶e̶a̶n̶ S̶e̶a̶n̶ says:

    In the stillness leading up to the 1940 German invasion of France, a reluctant lieutenant and his men occupy a concrete blockhouse in a remote forest near the Belgian border As the slow weeks creep into months, summer turning to autumn giving way to winter, Lieutenant Grange lives a dream like existence, entranced by the forest and the young widow Mona whom he encounters one day on the forest road The stalled war both confounds and lulls Grange into a state of perpetual self examination He wo In the stillness leading up to the 1940 German invasion of France, a reluctant lieutenant and his men occupy a concrete blockhouse in a remote forest near the Belgian border As the slow weeks creep into months, summer turning to autumn giving way to winter, Lieutenant Grange lives a dream like existence, entranced by the forest and the young widow Mona whom he encounters one day on the forest road The stalled war both confounds and lulls Grange into a state of perpetual self examination He wonders if the war will ever start and, if not, whether perhaps he might stay in this green paradise indefinitely, sheltered within the unconventional domestic bliss that has arisen between him and his men As the signs and sounds of the approaching war finally do increase, Grange s reactions alternate between hazy denial and an unanticipated growing excitement Gracq s prose is hypnotic in its lush, sensuous descriptions of life in the forest, which plunges forward in all its intricacies, oblivious to the impending war His deft control of language, ushered into English here by translator Richard Howard, allows the reader to come near to the curious, complicated experience of a human life enveloped and transformed by the natural worldThe forest, he thought again The forest He couldn t have said anythingthan that it was as if his mind were yielding to a better kind of light Walking was enough the world opened gently before him as he advanced, like a ford through a river.


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A Balcony in the Forest ❰Reading❯ ➼ A Balcony in the Forest Author Julien Gracq – Larringtonlifecoaching.co.uk In the Ardennes Forest on the Belgian border the French guns point north east, awaiting the German onslaught One reinforced concrete blockhouse in the heart of the forest is manned, this winter of , In the Ardennes Forest on the Belgian border in the PDF/EPUB À the French guns point north east, awaiting the German A Balcony PDF/EPUB or onslaught One reinforced concrete blockhouse in the heart of the forest is manned, this winter of, by Lieutenant Balcony in the PDF ↠ Grange with three men, who live in a chalet built over it Cut off from the rest of the world, their senses heightened to capture the sounds and smells of the forest, the men create their own security as autumn turns to winter Later, though, when winter turns to spring, when the sap rises and the panzer divisions attack, Lieutenant Grange meets the fate he has never believed he would escape But if this is a story of soldiers, it is not about fighting It is about solitude, about watching and waiting and about love, the young Lieutenant s devotion to Mona, the child widow discovered like a sprite in the forest one rainy night, who, in this surreal period of suspense, becomes his lover.