Friday Finds: ‘Through Sightless Eyes’ by Tareq Imam

Katherine Van de Vate’s translation of Tareq Imam’s “Through Sightless Eyes” is in the latest issue of Asymptote:

In her translator’s note, Van de Vate writes that, the story — which is dedicated “To Borges, or about him”  “was inspired by the writing of the Argentinian writer Jorge Luis Borges, to whom it is dedicated. It incorporates such Borgesian devices as labyrinths and libraries, unstable landscapes, and characters with shifting identities. The attached story was not easy to translate because (unlike in Borges) it is frequently unclear who is who. Imam seems to be writing about three different characters, but in all likelihood, there is only one.”

It opens:

You often spoke to me of a blind writer, who was fascinated by mazes and who smiled at even the most dreadful nightmares, while you walked, leaning on my arm—as if I would believe your talk about things that were receding before your eyes day by day. Do you remember when we saw him together after that, wandering in awe past the shop windows? You assured me that he was that blind man, and you were that country bumpkin he brushed off so roughly when you bent to kiss his hand gratefully after he’d pulled you from the path of the car about to take your life.

Read the rest of the story and the translator’s note at Asymptote.