“Baba Yaga” – a tale by Toby Barlow

Baba Yaga – Toby Barlow

I’ve decided to write this review by using excerpts from the book itself rather than the usual drivel that comes from my pen, or keystrokes, or what you would usually find dripping from the quill of most reviewers, I digress, many reviewers are such as they do not partake in the rampant smattering of adjectives and instead do an actual good work of a review, I am not one of those enlightened souls and will instead leave you with wisdom I found myself copying from the book and you can make your own decisions about the genius or lack thereof contained ‘neath that cover=].

Enjoy with Aloha.

Baba yaga

– Vidot did not judge too the man too harshly for having a mistress. It occured all to frequently in French society, it was as ordinary as the sliver of lemon rind that came with the morning espresso. But, in his opinion, it did suggest a weak man and a dull mind. Any fool could seduce, but it took a true intellect to know and love his partner. Women, to Charles Vidot, were absolute and thrilling mysteries. They moved though the world as if a different gravity applied to them and answered to untranslatable calls of the body and soul.

– We assume so much and forget how little we are promised.

– Knowing winter is returning only makes the spring that much more wonderful.

– He understood that some other souls might be panicked or even overwhelmed with grief at the thought of being trapped in a small insect’s body, but, he thought, these were generally the same people who felt cursed when there were only plain croissants at the market, or complained when the lunch waiter was slow. Whereas he believed life, any life, was a curious adventure, and if you merely kept your wits about you and stayed alert and in motion, you could find your way to a satisfactory conclusion.

– “Men have dragged us by the hair through the ages, and whether they give us crumbs or bright, shiny rocks, they truly give us nothing at all. If you have not opened your legs for them so that they could crawl out as babies or crawl in as men, then they will leave you to starve like a dog on the street. So now we are done playing the way they want us to play. Now we are moving to music they cannot hear, to a rhythm they cannot understand. They call it madness and we call it truth and find me a magistrate you can trust to judge between the two? Bah. So we dance on, we dance on.”

– Nothing is as good as the smell of horseshit. You know, the streets are swept clean now, and all the horses are gone, so there is nothing in the air but the soot of your burning engines. Thats why I sleep in the barn, to be close to the real smells. Horseshit and horse farts. Those are the smells of life.

– “Gambling is funny, isn’t it? I’ve never heard any persuasive theories on it’s roots, I suspect its some primordial residue from our early days, similar to how we still wear the belts that once held our hunting knives, while our women carry designer purses to store all those harvested berries. We think we’re modern and civilized, but Lord knows we’re not.”

– These were the things that defined your character and, as his grandfather had often told him, your character was the only thing you ever wholly and truly posessed.

– Zoya looked into her glass of wine. “But it’s funny, don’t you think? The way you Americans killed them. I read about it in a book once. How you would make treaties, yes? And then you would break the treaties so they would get upset and make war and so you would kill them and then there were new treaties? And you kept going and going, the same trick, over and again, until there weren’t any more Indians.”

– Ghosts, they say, stay for three simple reasons:
They love life to wholly to leave,
They love someone too deeply to part,
Or they need to linger on a bit,
To coax a distant knife
Toward its fated throat.

– There are rarely any big problems, only little problems that pile up

– Where would the world be, she wondered, without all these blind and greedy men.

– The whole fight is for the conservation of the individual soul. The enemy is the suppression of history; against us is the bewildering propaganda and brainwash, luxury and violence. – Ezra Pound, The Paris Review



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