Accueil L’oulipien de l’année Cité récitée
Annan, or the stone destiny

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Three suffocating days of camel led us in the valley of Annan, country of
the Eternal Winds. The air always moving carts emanations of desert and sea,
and transports a fine dust color of rust which ends up impregnating each
clothing. Its throbbing whistle never stops, at the point to prohibit any
conversation in the street. The Handbook of the Gypsum flower tells that if
the wind were to cease one day blowing, the walls of all the towns of Annan
would break down.
As Annan, at the day of the first rain of spring, the
child who will have ten years in the year randomly draws a stone from money
out of a bag of fabric.
On this stone is engraved its to become of adult.
The fate indicates as well its future trade, the identity of his/her
companion or his partner, the number of her children that the date of his
death. Certain destinies are happy and soft, others of an alarming banality,
some finally tumultuous and bloody. But also terrible they are, all the
citizens of Annan conform to it to the letter, without bitterness nor revolt.
We informed our guide of our astonishment. It smiled.

— To undergo most tragic of the destinies is nothing, if one knows oneself innocent of his own misfortune.

Cities of memory – Herve Le Tellier - 2002 International Berg

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