Teksten in papieren zakken

Een eerste verzameling:

Als we vandaag een boek kopen is het negen van de tien keer een roman. De kaft, de pagina’s, ze zijn de drager en de verpakking van het verhaal. Maar maak je zelf boeken, bind je zelf boeken in, dan ervaar je dat een boek ook een ding op zich zelf is. Ook de vorm van het boek vertelt een verhaal. Soms één verhaal, soms, net als middeleeuwse boeken, een hele serie van verhalen. Soms fantasieën, soms geschiedenissen, soms geheimen.
Dit boek heeft meer dan tien zakken. In iedere zak is ruimte voor geheimen. Ga op onderzoek uit. Misschien is er een verband tussen al die verhalen, misschien ook niet.

Empires of the Indus – The story of a River
The 10th anniversary edition by Alice Albinia. Reissue from 2018.
Page 89:

Until Shah Abdul Latif began composing poetry, Muslim poets and saint-versifiers in India wrote in Persian.
The antecedents of this language were great (Rumi, Hafiz), its metaphors imported (nightingales, roses), and both the poet’s persona and his subject (the Beloved) were courtly and male. Shah Abdil Latif , like Luther, spoke to the people in their own tongue. He read and quoted Rumi just as he read and quoted the Qur’an, but his subject matter was entirely local. He sang of farmers and fisher and the stars – the very being of peasant life.
It was the Indus, though, the river at the heart if Sindhj life, which was the silent protagonist of many of his songs.
In the eighteenth century the Indus was used far more than it is today – for travel, for transport of goods, for recreation as well as irrigation – and Latif describes it in all its moods: its high waves and whirlpools and treacherous quicksands, the boats that sail upon it and the pilgrims and merchants that traverse it.
He journeys, in his songs, out through the Delta and on to the high sea, across small creeks and freshwater lakes.
Water is a blessing and rain, like the Prophet, is rahmat, Divine Grace.
But the river is also dangerous, and crossing it is an allegory of the torturous passage from life to death.

Page 108:

‘Aap parne, likhne walli hain,’ she says, ‘aur nahi samjhi hain.’
You can read and write – and still you do not understand.

Return of a King: The Battle for Afghanistan
Door William Dalrymple
Paperback editie uit 2014.
Pagina 45:

Yet again, Shuja had to retreat.
Driven back by the now increasing powerful Barakzai brothers, he had no option but to return to the territories of the Company, losing more of his troops during a sandstorm on a reckless summer crossing of the desert shales between Shikarpur and Jaiselmer.
He also failed to repay the bankers of Sindh, who vowed never to lend to him again.
As Mirza ‘Ata put it, quoting a Persian proverb, ‘those once bitten by a snake fear even a twisted rope.’