Stig Aasvik’s Wilted Poems is a continuation of the autofictional series begun with The Lofoten Wall in 2017. The Lofoten Wall refers to a steep mountain range, rising from the Vestfjord, which, when viewed from a distance, looks like a single wall. Each novel in the series is its own metaphorical mountain, but together they can be understood as something like a wall of books. The literary geography is real, but still takes on a dreamlike and mythic quality, becoming a metaphor for the protagonist’s Lofoten-born father. Each book, or mountain, is about parents and upbringing, warmth and irreconcilable memories, about everyday life as an author, class mobility, dreams of becoming an artist, about life as a partner, as a father, as a son, about joy and dissatisfaction, light and dark, reading and writing, money and anxiety.
We are in the protagonist’s head, in his consciousness, the stream is opened, then closed, fragmented and frayed, thoughts, dreams, desires, all of it, woven into an urgent flow of words and sentences.
We slip elegantly between different versions of the novelist. Stretches and moods change and time flows in streams, just like the narrative, branching off, at once incidental and careful.
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