Una letra familiar / Familiar Handwriting
Irene Gruss

nouvelle / fiction
pages: 80
isbn: 978-987-9108-32-1
series: buenos y breves / 4


This school was gloomy. When I sat against the wall at the little green desk I already knew how to read, and I could hardly write, but now I found gloomy I can say the school was like that, the classroom was gloomy; the high walls and the ceilings, painted in an oily grey and a shitty yellowish. Gloomy: that is the word.

From a personal diary and the memories of the childhood to a story of fragments, displayed from a naïve point of view. This story might be blurry, but never candid, the girl in it holds the drive to write. On Familiar Handwriting, memories from the first years of school, the parent’s political activism, social and family changes, the pain for the losses and the first love shape little by little Gruss’s unique beauty. One of the most relevant voices in Argentinean contemporary poetry, Irene Gruss’s acute perception brings a story that mingles fiction and chronicle.


One of the most powerful voices in current Argentine poetry surprises with its first prose publication, with tremendous sidelong echoes of Childhood Notebooks (Cuadernos de Infancia) by Norah Lange or even Various Imagination (Varia Imaginación) by Silvia Molloy. Leonor Silvestri, Radar libros / Página/12

Irene Gruss makes the most of the clisés of the past, and polishes some of the common places, those eternal “master pieces”, according to Cocteau, to sing in a granular  unmistakable voice, wisely forged by magic and disillusionment. Walter Cassara, ADN Cultura / La Nación


Irene Gruss was born in Buenos Aires, in 1950. She published seven books of poetry: La luz en la ventana,1982; El mundo incompleto, 1987; La calma, 1991; Sobre el asma, 1995; Solo de contralto, 1998, En el brillo de uno en el vidrio de uno, 2000, La dicha, 2004. Una letra familiar (Familiar Handwriting) is her debut in fiction. During 2008 bajo la luna will publish her Collected Poems (1982-2004).


© bajo la luna, 2008