‘The Miller’s Tale’

Wild Ink

A tribute to a Hungarian author you may not have heard of. Written for the Liars’ League, and read by Paul Clarke at the Fact & Fiction event on March 8, 2011. You can watch Paul’s marvellous performance here.   

It is difficult to say or write the words.

Ignaz Brno-Hálavyí is dead.

Perhaps only those of you who are fortunate enough to be Hungarian will know him. Perhaps, even, only those of you who have seen the black chimneys of Eöstvöt and breathed the city’s bitter air. Perhaps only those who have visited the terraced grey-brick house on Mogyoró Street in which Brno-Hálavyí was born and died.

Or it may be that, after all, none of us truly knew him.

But we know his work.

Or perhaps, in fact, we do not know his work.

Ignaz Brno-Hálavyí came into the world in December 1912. As a boy, he…

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