The Memory of the Air is a slim volume that confronts an assault, at first obliquely and later directly. Caroline Lamarche’s narrator begins dreaming of a dead woman in a ravine, and resolves to visit her regularly. It seems pretty clear that this is an internal journey for the narrator:
Every morning, I think that everything is going to be all right. Or, on the contrary, that everything is going to go wrong. Either way, I have to go for it: put one foot in front of the other. Depending on the day, the descent into the ravine can be more or less easy.
As the monologue flows back and forth between the narrator’s life and that ravine, we get a sense of her reality growing unstable. She tells us about her relationship with a man she refers to only as” the man before” or “Manfore”. Over time, we see how toxic – indeed, abusive – that relationship was. A remark from Manfore then takes the narrator back further, to finally face what happened to her in the past.
Katherine Gregor’s translation takes you right into the narrator’s perspective. Reading The Memory of the Air is an intense, harrowing experience.
Published by Héloïse Press.