Friday, April 08, 2011

Spellbound

I have written before of my disappointment with reading Jhumpa Lahiri's books specially because she has such amazing facility with language. From lesser talent, the reader expects a lot less and is not nearly as disappointed.
Finally, I read a piece by Lahiri that is completely satisfying. This is the kind of writing I have been waiting to read. Each word in this essay is like a smooth pebble, the sentences themselves so precisely balanced that one word less or more and nothing would be quite the same. If this essay was food, it would be an ethereal lemon souffle - delightfully light but far from frivolous. 
What I specially loved about this piece is that she made no reference to her immigrant roots or invoke her signature diaspora angst. Leaving those tropes behind, did not take anything away from the deeply personal voice of her writing, instead it rendered the piece universally appealing. This is the Lahiri that I've been waiting to read a long time.
I can't wait for her to write a volume of essays - if they are nearly as good as this one, it would have the reader absolutely spellbound.

No comments: