What do you think?
Rate this book
191 pages, Hardcover
First published January 1, 1967
This blue, indolent town. Its cats. Its pale sky. The empty sky of morning, drained and pure. Its deep, cloven streets. Its narrow courts, the faint, rotten odor within, orange peels lying in the corners. The uneven curbstones, their edges worn away. A town of doctors, all with large houses.
Some things, as I say, I saw, some discovered, and some dreamed, and I can no longer differentiate between them. But my dreams are as important as anything I acquired by stealth. More important, because they are the intuitive in its purest state. Without them, facts are no more than a kind of debris, unstrung, like beads. The dreams are as true and manifest as the iron fences of France flashing black in the rain. More true, perhaps. They are the skeleton of all reality.
"NADA DE ESTO ES CIERTO... Me limito a anotar detalles que absorbí, fragmentos capaces de desgarrarme el cuerpo. Es la historia de cosas que nunca existieron, aunque el menor asomo de duda al respecto, la mínima posibilidad, lo sume todo en tinieblas. Solo quiero que quien lea esto esté tan resignado como yo."Nada es real, pero todo es verdad, la verdad del narrador, esa que él construye quizás únicamente a través de unos pocos detalles sobre personas en verdad reales. Después o seguidamente o al lado está la verdad que nosotros construimos en torno a este relato confuso, envuelto en una niebla que nos obliga a completarlo con fragmentos propios, esos que fueron capaces de desgarrarnos a nosotros mismos.
“... oigo el sonido de los tacones de Annie, lentos, finos, cuando finalmente se encamina hacia la puerta, se detiene... Él llega después de pagar la cuenta y salen juntos a la calle. Solo en mi mesa (siempre imagino esta escena), observo cómo se vuelven, cruzan la sala abovedada y por fin se marchan. Amantes desconocidos. Se pierden en la ciudad. No volveré a verlos nunca. Estoy aquí sentado. Tardarán por lo menos diez minutos en servirme el postre. El camarero tendrá que venir, retirar el plato principal, tomar nota de mi pedido. “Y qué bien supo transmitirme todo esto Salter... sobre todo si tenemos en cuenta que yo nunca he sentido algo ni parecido: soy de los que andaba besuqueándome por los rincones.
He hasn't the strength to dream, or rather, his dreams take place while he is awake and they are marvelous for at least one quality: he has the power to prolong them.he has a dream of France. wintry and grey, rain and empty streets. he has a dream of a younger version of himself, handsome and aloof, virile. a tabula rasa of sorts. he can project himself onto that blank slate, into a story that he has made, and he does; but it is not his, not really. it is his dream version of that story, that young man, that time in France. he has a dream of a romance, fated to end as soon as it has begun. he dreams himself into that romance. and he makes that romance both tragic and commonplace.
The orchestras of the world beat softly. The muscle in her behind is tight.
None of this is true…I’m sure you’ll come to realize that. I am only putting down details which entered me, fragments that were able to part my flesh. It’s a story of things that never existed although even the faintest doubt of that, the smallest possibility, plunges everything into darkness.
Her mouth feels warm. I try to find darkness, a void, but they are too luminous, the white sky behind them, their bodies open and fresh. They are too innocent. They’re like my own children, and they illustrate an affection which has little reason to, which in fact does not exist except that she – at the very bottom it is her only real distinction – she knows how to make things come true. Her mouth moves in long, sweet reaches. Dean can feel himself beginning to tumble, to come apart, and I am like a saxophone player in a marching band, in love with a movie queen…
Beloved town. I see it in all weathers, the sunlight falling into its alleys like fragments of china, the silent evenings, the viaduct blue with rain. And coming back – this is much later – there are long, clear stretches with fields on either side, and we fly down an aisle of trees, the trunks all white with lime. Roads of France. Restaurants and cemeteries. Black trees and hanging rain. The needle is on one-forty. The axles are cracking like wood.
It’s a bitter night. Flats of rain are passing. Heavy drops ring in the gutter outside their window, but they are in a dovecote, they are pigeons beneath the eaves. The rain is falling all around them. Deep in feathers, breathing softly, they lie. His sperm swims slowly inside her, oozing out between her legs.
As for the car, it's a curious thing--it's registered in the name of Pritchard, 16 bis rue Jardin, and they know him. He's off in Greece for the summer, they think, but they'll handle that, too. Perhaps. It's parked under the trees near the house and locked, but like an old man fading, it has already begun crumbling before one's eyes. The tires seem smooth. There are leaves fallen on the hood, the whitened roof. Around the wheels one can detect the first, faint discoloring of chrome. The leather inside, seen through windows which are themselves streaked blue, is dry and cracked. There it sits, this stilled machine, the electric clock on the dash ticking unheard, slowly draining the last of life. And one day the clock is wrong. The hands are frozen. It is ended.