There is nothing heavier than compassion. Not even one's own pain weights so heavy as the pain one feels for someone, with someone, a pain intensified by the imagination and prolonged by a hundred echoes.
Whoever wishes to remember must not stay in one place, waiting for the memories to come of their own accord! Memories are scattered all over the immense world, and it takes voyaging to find them and make them leave their refuge.
Waking up was sheer delight for him: he always showed a naive and simple amazement at the discovery that he was back on earth; he was sincerely pleased. She, on the other hand, awoke with great reluctance, with a desire to stave off the day by keeping her eyes closed.
Vertiginously close? Can proximity cause vertigo? It can. When the North Pole comes so close as to touch the South Pole, the earth disappears and man finds himself in a void that makes his head spin and beckons him to fall.
The scene taking place illustrates an immemorial error of men: having appropriated the role of seducers, they never even consider any women but the ones they might desire; the idea doesn't occur to them that a woman who is ugly or old, or who simply stands outside their own erotic imaginings, might want to possess them.
She blushed. It is a beautiful thing when a woman blushes; at that instant her body no longer belongs to her; she doesn't control it; she is at its mercy; oh, can there be anything more beautiful than the sight of a woman violated by her own body!
He looked down at her and realized how lovely she was and how difficult it would be to tear himself away. But the world beyond the window was even more beautiful. And if he was leaving a beloved woman for its sake, then that world would be even more enhanced by the price of a betrayed love.
That conversation with the taxi driver suddenly made clear to me the essence of the writer's occupation. We write books because our children aren't interested in us. We address ourselves to an anonymous world because our wives plug their ears when we speak to them.
We pass through the present with our eyes blindfolded. We are permitted merely to sense and guess at what we are actually experiencing. Only later when the cloth is untied can we glance at the past and find out what we have experienced and what meaning it has.
She refused at first, saying it would make a mockery of their love. She loved him too much to admit that what she thought of as unforgettable could ever be forgotten. Finally, of course, she did as he asked, but without enthusiasm. The notebooks showed it: they had many empty pages, and the entries were fragmentary.
Horror is a shock, a time of utter blindness. Horror lacks every hint of beauty. All we can see is the piercing light of an unknown event awaiting us. Sadness, on the other hand, assumes we are in the know... The light of horror thus lost its harshness, and the world was bathed in a gentle, bluish light that actually beautified it.
If I imagine the genesis of a novelist in the form of an exemplary tale, a "myth," that genesis looks to me like a conversion story: Saul becoming Paul; the novelist being born from the ruins of his lyrical world.
Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it.