The Death Of What We Really Are

The figure’s hair is tied at the top
by a pinker than pink ribbon; I hadn’t noticed.

On these days I’m particularly fond of gardens.

On a simple train ride I uselessly and restlessly waver between my inattention to the
landscape and my inattention to the book that would amuse me if I were someone else.

What we call life is the slumber of our real life,
the death of what we really are.

We enter amounts and lose; we add up totals and pass on;
we close the books and the invisible balance is always against us.

I can love and hate like others and,
like others,
feel fear and enthusiasm; but neither my love nor my hate,
nor my fear nor my enthusiasm,
are quite like the real thing.

It pleases me to get a fever,
since it seems perfectly natural to my recumbent state.

We no longer knew ourselves.


—Pantaleão, Historia Cómica do Affonso Çapateiro