and it struck me that he was, for a change, flailing away in trying to show that he liked her work – he too used the word “real” and “reality” frequently, as in mixing the “real” with the “invented” – which implies that he knows the difference – but how? Only via newspapers. Once the newspaper memories die there remains the fabulous, and several great instances among novels of the past 50 + years are Günter Grass’s The Tin Drum – the first half – and Gabriel Marquez One Hundred Years of Solitude – and the manner in which they are fabulous does not depend on referentiality to that kind of newspaper real, but, especially Grass’s Tin Drum and his novella Cat & Mouse on the kind of transformation that transpires in the story teller as Walter Benjamin describes in his essay on the Russian fairy tale writer Leskov – “Whiling away time is the dreambird that hatches the egg of experience." Handke achieves the fabulous in a different manner… The concept for an experience appears to come alive in him, it is gradually birthed, left behind of the experience is what Benjamin calls “the death mask.” Another way of putting it is to say that something – an imaginary, a project appears as an “As If” … and is then realized. Thus, Handke’s calling some of his long narrative fables, and forward-date, by a few decades, creating a rather simple-minded plus-cum-perfect, seems to me to indicate that his trust in his one beautiful sentence after a breathing sentence – his aesthetic manner of proceeding - is shaky! Yet, since some of Handke’s prose works, especially the longer ones – which have not gone through the transformative imagination - so autobiographically based - overlaps with historical reportage it is not possible to make sharp demarcations between genres – you notice the point I am granting you!
Of course there exists the possibility that Handke is unaware of the deeply mind-altering effect, or of some, of his work the reasons for which, many of them technical, I will elaborate below