Sunstroke: Selected Stories [Ivan Bunin] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. ”The Gentleman from San Francisco” is easily the best known of . The Sunstroke: Selected Stories of Ivan Bunin Community Note includes chapter- by-chapter summary and analysis, character list, theme list, historical context. Finding the best translation for the concluding part of Ivan Bunin’s Sunstroke.

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Photograph via Flickr by EP Holcomb. Where ever did you come from? Is my head spinning or are we turning somewhere? There was blackness ahead, and there were lights. From the blackness, a balmy and powerful wind whipped their faces, and the lights raced off somewhere to the side. With Volgian flair the steamer traced a wide, impetuous arc and sped toward a small landing.

The lieutenant took her hand, raising it to his lips. This hand, small and strong, smelled of suntan. The ship had gained too much speed, hitting the dimly lit landing with a soft thud, and they nearly fell on one another. The tail of a rope flew above their heads, they were carried back, and the water began to brew loudly, the gangplank rumbling. The lieutenant sprang for their things.

Within a minute they were walking past the sleepy ticket office, emerging in hub-deep sand and silently boarding a dusty carriage. They rode uphill, a slight incline amidst sparse, crooked lamp posts, the road soft with dust—the ascent seemed infinite.

But here they were on top, rattling along the pavement, there was a square, offices, a lighthouse, the warmth and smells of a resort town at night. The driver stopped by an illuminated lobby with an ancient wooden staircase rising steep behind its closed doors, an ancient unshaven porter in a frock and pink collared shirt begrudgingly taking their things and walking ahead of them on his worn feet.

They came in, and right as the porter shut the door the lieutenant sprang after her so impulsively and both of them suffocated in such a delirious kiss, that for many years they remembered this moment, and neither one experienced anything like it for the rest of their lives.

At ten on that sunny morning, hot and joyful with rings of church bells, sounds of the bazaar on the square by the hotel, smells of hay, coal and again everything complicated and fragrant about a Russian resort town, she, this little nameless woman she never did say her name, jokingly calling herself a lovely strangerrode away. They slept little, but in the morning she emerged from vunin the folding-screen by the bed, washed and dressed, and within five minutes, looked as fresh as a seventeen-year-old.

She was still gay, and free, and—already level-headed.

If we go together, everything will be ruined. I would find that very unpleasant. I must have blacked out, been under some sort of spell. Or better yet, we both had something of a sunstroke. And the lieutenant agreed with her, somewhat easily. Feeling easy and joyful still, he took her snstroke the landing—making it just in time for the departure of the rose-colored bunim kissed her on deck, in front of everyone, and barely had time to hop onto the already retreating gangplank.

And he was back in the room, just as easy and carefree.

Yet something had changed. It was still full of her—and sunsfroke. It still smelled of her fine English eau de toilette, her half-drunk tea-cup still stood on the tray, but she was gone.

The folding-screen had been moved aside, the bed still unmade. And he felt that now, he simply lacked the strength to look at that bed. He blocked it with the folding-screen, shut the windows to hush the murmurs of the bazaar and the screeching of the wheels, lowered the billowing white curtains, sat on the sofa. She sailed away—at this point she is far, sitting, probably, in the white glass saloon or on deck, looking at that enormous river glistening under the sun, the oncoming rafts, the yellow sandbanks, and the water and sky glowing into the distance, that entire immeasurable expanse of the Volga.


And goodbye now forever, for eternity. Because, where sunsttoke they ever meet again? sunsfroke

It was too bizarre, unnatural, unbelievable! And he felt such pain and such a sense of how useless the rest of his life would be without her, that he was gripped by horror, despair.

Bunin’s “Sunstroke” | TextEtc Blog

Again, he took to pacing the room, trying not to look bknin the bed behind the folding-screen. And what actually happened? It really is some kind of sunstroke! And most importantly, how will I spend an entire day in this hole without her? He still remembered all of her, each tiny feature, remembered the smell of her tan and the cotton dress, her firm body, the lively sound of her voice, gay and free.

And what can I do? How can I survive this endless day, with these memories, with this inextricable torment, in this godforsaken town, above this same glowing Volga where that rose-colored steamer has carried her away? He needed salvation, something to engage in, to distract himself, to go somewhere. But, where could he go? By the lobby a young cabby in a neat, long-fitting coat peacefully smoked a cigarette. The lieutenant glanced at him feeling bewildered and amazed: The bazaar was already disbanding.

He found himself walking on the fresh manure through the wagons, the cartloads of cucumbers, the sunstroks new bowls and pots, the peasant women sitting on the ground hollering over each other, calling him, taking the pots in their hands and banging, the taps of their fingers ringing inside of them, demonstrating their worth, peasant men deafening him, yelling: He went to the cathedral buni they were singing, it was already loud, gay, and emphatic, a consciousness of duty fulfilled.

The epaulettes and the buttons of his tunic were scalding hot, so much that it hurt to touch them. The inner band of his hat was soaked with sweat, his face was ablaze. He returned to the hotel with pleasure and walked into the spacious, empty cafeteria on the bottom floor, took off his tunic with the same pleasure, and sat at the table in front of the open window, the heat poured in, but at least there was a breeze, he ordered iced fish soup.

He drank several glasses of vodka, chasing it with lightly salted pickles and dill, and feeling that he would in an instant choose to die tomorrow if he could just by some miracle bring her back, spend another sunstrokee it just so.

He pushed the soup aside, asked for a cup of black coffee, and began to smoke and anxiously reflect: How could he escape this sudden, unexpected love? But to escape it—he felt far too acutely—was impossible. And suddenly he got up again, took his cap and his swagger stick, asked for directions to the post office and walked there in a hurry, having already composed a telegram: At the corner, in front of the post office, there was a window-display for a photography studio.

For a long time he looked at large portrait of some soldier with thick epaulettes, bulging eyes, a low forehead, astonishingly magnificent whiskers and a very broad chest completely covered with decorations.


Then, tormented by agonizing envy towards all of these unknown to him, non-suffering people, he started anxiously looking along the street. The street was completely empty.

Sunstroke: Selected Stories

The houses were all the same, white, two-story merchant houses with big yards—and it seemed that within them, there was not a soul; thick white dust covered the pavement, all of it was blinding him, all of it flooded with hot, white, flaming and joyful, but here, kind of bunun, sunlight. The road ascended in the distance, twisted and ran into a cloudless, shimmering, grayish horizon.

That was especially unbearable. And the lieutenant marched back, head down, squinting from the light and focusing on his feet, wobbling, stumbling, spur catching on spur. Gathering his last bit of strength, he walked into his large, empty room. He lay back on the bed, leaning his dusty boots against the footboard. The windows were open, the curtains drawn together, and a light breeze inflated them from time to time, wafting the heat of binin smoldering tin roofs, and that entire luciferous and now silent and completely deserted Volgian world.

He lay there, resting his head on his hands, fixated on a spot in front of him. Then he clenched his teeth, feeling the sunsttoke roll through his closed eyelids down his cheeks, and finally fell asleep.

When he re-opened his eyes, the evening sun was already yellowing and reddening. The wind had calmed, the room was stuffy and dry, like an oven. And both yesterday and that entire day seemed like they were ten years ago. He took his time to rise, took his time to wash his face, opened the curtains, called, asking for a samovar and the bill, and sipped on tea with lemon for a long time.

Bunin’s Sunstroke

Then he ordered a cabby, for someone to carry out his things, and gave the porter an entire five rubles bnuin he boarded the carriage, sitting on its bleached orange seats. The lieutenant gave him five rubles too, took the ticket and walked onto the landing. Just like yesterday there was a soft thud upon the ramp and a light dizziness from the instability shnstroke, then the flying tail, the rumble of the water brewing and streaming ahead, under the wheels of the slightly retreating steamer. And the crowds on the steamer, which was lit up already and wafting the smells of cooking, made everything seem remarkably welcoming and buniin.

The dark summer dusk was dying out far ahead, reflecting in the river gloomily, sleepily and in an array of colors, the river still somewhat glowing with ripples, trembling in the distance under it, under this dusk, and the lights swimming and swimming backwards, scattered in the surrounding darkness.

Translated in October from the original as it appears in I. Again, she touched her hot cheek with the back of her hand. Lawrence, can be read as an allegory on the falsity of bourgeois civilization, which binin entails a disconnect from nature and real life.

List of short stories by Ivan Bunin – Wikipedia

The story can be viewed as a paradigm of his treatment of love, which though deeply felt is never lasting. Sexual encounters are brief, profoundly moving, but ultimately transitory. Translated from the Russian by Masha Udensiva-Brenner:

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