I was beginning to sink into poverty. Slowly, it was drawing circles around me; the first seemed to leave me everything, the last would leave me only myself. One day, I found myself confined in the city; travelling was no longer more than a fantasy.
I had no enemies. No one bothered me. Sometimes a vast solitude opened in my head and the entire world disappeared inside it, but came out again intact, without a scratch, with nothing missing.
— Blanchot, ‘The Madness of the Day’
Three hundred and sixty-five nights without daytimes, huge, massive, this is what I wish upon the haters of the night.
Early sun, I see you, but only where you no longer are.
— René Char, ‘In a Crude Mountain Shelter‘ (tr. S. Dubroff)
Sitting on the bed with my head in my hands (always these extreme postures), I told myself that the people were not afraid of the rain; some, coming out of the hairdresser’s, might want to avoid it, but no one was actually afraid it would never stop, would become a continuous downpour obliterating everything – annihilating everything. It was I who, standing in front of my window and misled by the dread inspired in me by the movements taking place before my eyes – rain, moving humans and automobiles – had suddenly felt afraid of the bad weather, when what had really terrified me, once again, was the passing of time itself.
— Toussaint, The Bathroom (tr. N. Amphoux and P. de Angelis)