Axolotl

by Cortazar, Julio

More About the Story:

Last night, I did something I thought I’d never do. I went dancing. And not seated dive-barstool dancing when your picks come up on the jukebox, or late-night loftparty dancing, but proper dancing, at a Dance Club. I’ve never done anything quite like this, and will likely not again, but in those few hours, catching a glowing mid-bounce smile from a birthday girl while giving up the inhibitions of hips and feet, I felt okay, that this was, in some ways, a comparably healthful social outing. No booze or other toxins, our little circle impenetrable to the detritus of humanity surrounding us, and all that exercise, I’d wake up feeling like a billion bucks.

Instead I’m spent, and woke up wondering if I’d become an axolotl, only one with scratchy voice and ringing ears and creaky hipjoints. And how could I think such a thing and not read about it, axolotllic voice notwithstanding.

Article written by miette

Miette has been podcasting the best of world literature's short fiction since March 2005, when she was just a pup.

2 Responses

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  1. mtte.
    mtte. November 13, 2005 at 5:09 pm |

    Because it’s always fascinating to hear other voices interpreting the same piece, be sure to listen to a great rendition of Axolotl delivered by my friends at Stories To Go:

    http://storiestogo.blogspot.com/2005/08/axolotl-by-julio-cortzar_15.html

  2. Jimmy
    Jimmy December 31, 2009 at 8:05 am |

    For the past few nights I’ve listened to this podcast and almost always drift off before the end. I love this story so much, and have finally gotten to the end after many tries. Its rich language and sounds are perfect for sleeping to. And the imagery is so vivid, the words so concrete against each other, they swim in my head and in my dreams. I love how that deep looking he does is transferred to words, and how he carries this investigation of looking even further to its logical conclusion of becoming. It’s warped and delicious and beautiful. The only thing I don’t like is the ending where he refers to the man writing the story. It kind of kicks me out of that beautiful world, and into reality again :(.

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