A long short story from Tim Parks

The day is coming, it is not far off now, when I will be overwhelmed by anguish. This premonition has been with me for some time. What do I mean, overwhelmed by anguish? I am not sure. It is a formula I use to describe what is coming. I expect a moment when a balance […]

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“Milano–Roma–Palermo,” by Tim Parks

I’m scarcely sure what nationality I really am these days. All I know is that for the past thirty years I’ve lived and worked in northern Italy, and like most of the people around me I know little of the South, though the South is always present to us as an idea—a bad one, for […]

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In the Dasgupta Institute, Tim Parks

Beth: People are fidgeting. Kristin has arrived to my left, Marcia to my right. Even without seeing, I feel who is there. I know them, I know the space. I know the vibrations they send, the way the air changes when they sit. Someone starts to breathe very deeply, rhythmically, behind us, some new student […]

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Sitting Still II: The Skeptic Meditates—from Tim Parks

Seeking relief from chronic and debilitating pains that conventional medicine could not cure, critic Tim Parks finds himself, much to his own surprise, attending a meditation retreat that involves sitting in crossed-legged silence for twelve and more hours a day. Although the retreat takes place in Italy, where Parks lives, the course leader, John Coleman, […]

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Sitting Still I: Paradoxical Relaxation — from Tim Parks

Exhausted by years of fruitless attempts to treat a battery of abdominal pains and urinary disorders with conventional medicine, Tim Parks tries a relaxation cure described in a book discovered on the net. He has the impression he is clutching at straws. Silence. More or less. How strange, I thought, after the fourth or fifth […]

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