Frances Richardson selects two short texts by Virginia Woolf - 'The Mark on the Wall' published in 1917 and 'Solid Objects' in 1918. Both begin with a black dot which becomes a jumping off point for musing about the structures and systems which govern our livelihoods. The first text has the narrator enjoying their own wondering about the identity of the mark on the wall, pulling away from the dreariness of logical thinking, championing instead, the inventiveness and possibilities in imaginative thinking. While the second text revolves around two politicians, one of whom finds a piece of smoothed glass at the seaside. He becomes obsessed with observation and collecting, giving up his political aspirations for a more materially intimate life - what an excellent idea for many of that lot !
Jane Hayes Greenwood
'Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead' 2009 and 'Flights' 2007 by Olga Tokarczuk