Keiichiro Hirano : the expanding universe
Keiichiro Hirano is the most creative living writer I know. He is Japanese, but his literature is wider than this aspect of his identity. Of course, it is probably very influenced by the Japanese culture. But it is not where you live that matters for a writer : it is “where you think”. His mind is everywhere, perhaps mainly in France. It seems so. And therefore, he might be sort of a French writer in a way.
Who cares ? Each of his books is much wider than this or that country, wider than the world itself. It seems that nothing can contain the mind of Keiichiro Hirano. This is where his novels have a fantastic touch. When I read them, each time I turn a page, I feel like jumping into a whole new universe. Shall I do it ?
Well, yes. Because I trust the man who has written the book. I’m ready to follow the guide, much more easily than I can in a touristic place. Following the lines he wrote is like visiting the Katsura Villa. The gardens also contain the whole universe, and the landscape outside also belongs to the gardens, and the moon itself also belongs to the gardens, and the visitor only feels like dying here and burning with the whole place.
Keiichiro Hirano, the writer, seems to be of the same sort. He has no limits. I think he writes to define his world and ours at the same time. He writes to be contained in there. Reading his books is like travelling inside his brains. I’ve got the feeling it must sometimes be difficult to have no limit. Difficult to live when you’re like an expanding universe.
I did not enjoy the French confinement due to the Covid-19 very much. The only place where I’m ready to confine is Keiichiro Hirano’s works. I had time to re-read all his books (those translated into French mainly by Corinne Atlan), and now I can’t get rid of them. They seem to grow inside me. Now I contain the universe. Hope I can help in any way. Tonight, from France, this faraway country that is so close, I’ll be watching the moon. The same that is to be seen from the Katsura Villa.