Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The End Of The Affair: Quotes


"It was as if quite suddenly after all the promiscuous years I had grown up. My passion for Sarah had killed simple lust forever. Never again would I be able to enjoy a woman without love." (46)

"...the moment of absolute trust and absolute pleasure, the moment when it was impossible to quarrel because it was impossible to think." (55)

"It's a strange thing to discover and to believe that you are loved, when you know that there is nothing in you for anybody but a parent or a God to love." (70)

"I'm tired and I don't want anymore pain...I want ordinary corrupt human love." (99)

"...she had fallen asleep against my shoulder...the slowly growing pain in my upper arm where her weight lay was the greatest pleasure I had ever known." (105)

"It was as though by 'dying' she had robbed me of part of myself. I was losing my individuality, the memories dropping off like gangrened limbs." (113)

"For a month or two this year a ghost had pained me with hope...I would die a little more every day, but how I longed to retain it. As long as one suffers one lives." (113)

"I imagined I could smell her scent. I wanted things I should never have again – there was no substitute." (114)

"...but when I tried to remember her voice saying 'don't worry,' I found I had no memory for sounds. I couldn't imitate her voice. I couldn't even caricature it: when I tried to remember it, it was anonymous – just a woman's voice. The process of forgetting her had set in." (119)

"Grief and disappointment are like hate: they make men ugly with self-pity and bitterness. And how selfish they make us too" (129)

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muffine said...

some more:

“…I felt the elation I used to feel when I heard the front door close and her step in the hall. I had a wild hope that the sight of me a few days before had woken not love, of course, but a sentiment, a memory which I might work on. At the time it seemed to me that if I could have her once more- however quickly and crudely and unsatisfactorily- I would be at peace again: I would have washed her out of my system, and afterwards I would leave her, not she me.” (19)

“…and sitting there, my fingers on the quiet instrument, with something to look forward to. I thought to myself: I remember. This is what hope feels like.” (21)

“Looking at her over my whiskey I thought how odd it was that I felt no desire for her at all. It was as if quite suddenly after all the promiscuous years I had grown up. My passion for Sarah had killed simple lust for ever. Never again would I be able to enjoy a woman without love.” (46) (you had this one)

12 June 1944.

Sometimes I get so tired of trying to convince him that I love him and shall love him forever. He pounces on my words like a barrister and twists them. I know he is afraid of that desert which would be around him if our love were to end, but he can’t realize that I feel exactly the same. What he says aloud, I say to myself silently and write it here. What can one build in the desert? Sometimes after a day when we have made love many times, I wonder whether it isn’t possible to come to an end of sex, and I know he is wondering too and is afraid of that point where the desert begins. What do we do in the desert if we lose each other? How does one go on living after that?

He is jealous of the past and the present and the future. His love is like a medieval chastity belt: only when he is there with me, in me, does he feel safe. If only I could make him feel secure, then we could love peacefully, happily, not savagely, inordinately, and the desert would recede out of sight. For a lifetime perhaps.

If one could believe in God, would he fill the desert?

I have always wanted to be liked or admired. I feel a terrible insecurity if a man turns on me, if I love a friend. I don’t even want to lose a husband. I want everything, all the time, everywhere. I’m afraid of the desert. God loves you, they say in churches, God is everything. People who believe that don’t need admiration, they don’t need to sleep with a man, they feel safe. But I can’t invent a belief.

All today Maurice has been sweet to me. He tells me often that he has never loved another woman so much. He thinks by saying it often, he will make me believe it. But I believe simply because I love him in exactly the same way. If I stopped loving him, I would cease to believe in his love. If I loved God, then I would in His love for me. It’s not enough to need it. We have to love first, and I don’t know how. But I need it, how I need it.

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