“From my house to his house we are separated by 574 km. Too many”.
A little advice. A small book. A small voice: that of Tiromancino, soundtrack for hearts in transit. Browsing through these microscopic journeys leaves a bit of the feeling of when we hear Stitch say, “This is my family. I found it on my own. It’s small and broken, but beautiful.”
Why write a book to tell about emotional places? Why read it? Perhaps to feel understood, in the sense of understood, but also in the etymological sense of being held together. We move every day through immense roads, galactic cities, boundless landscapes. The infinite keyboard that Novecento would not have known (nor wanted) to play. Our days, the time we go through disguised as passers-by and extras, are so defenseless that it is as if something of us continuously expands until it disappears and gets lost in the ether. Instead each of us needs a stable container to be able to flourish, generate bonds, recognize ourselves in an identity. Valerio Millefoglie is a little man on a little path in search of a little self, a self that is enough. Enough to lay down my weapons, friends, enough not to have to fight to defend it. He travels to discover minute but dense places, full of meaning, not dispersed, compact in their specific weight, in their existence. Entering it always has something sacred, mystical – reducing the space to expand the sounding board of perceptions, all reactivated, all alert. There is fear and hesitation and respect. Amazed reverence in the face of the magic of discovery.
“I could dream of a thoughtless man, the most thoughtless man of all, he never solved anything […]. All the decisions he had to make he didn’t make them.”
They are little notes, reflections, admissions of guilt, nostalgia for things that have not happened, for times not passed through. They are both cautious and hopeful steps, infinitely tender in their attempt to occupy exactly the necessary space. The journey of this book is sharing extreme and reassuring: there is a sense of failure, disorientation, research, a small and precious love to hold on to lean out and look a little further. There is nothing trivial, nothing cloying, honest terror, childish curiosity of the gaze. But also and above all (because the journey is a journey) openness to encounter, arms open to the unknown knowing that the Other brings with it. It is a book also made up of quoted words, exchanges, other journeys, other stories: Millefoglie collects them and, with the care of the craftsman, meticulous in building his personal mosaic of lives, places, memories, humbly returns them to the reader , deferred travel companion, sure that the final picture, the one seen from afar, will have a different meaning for each one. Of course all the tiles will in turn become a single tile in the reader’s sentimental mosaic. We are all torn apart and we try to keep them together: it makes sense to think that, perhaps, by allowing ourselves a little understanding, it is in the embrace with which we gather them that all the beauty lies.
Written by Delis
Valerio Millefoglie, Little world, Laterza, Bari, 2014