Exile and the Kingdom

Above all, she loved being loved, and he had flooded her with attentions. Making her feel so often that she existed for him, he made her existence real. No, she was not alone.

Dans la chambre où, depuis un an, il dormait seul, cette présence le gênait. Mais elle le gênait aussi parce qu'elle lui imposait une sorte de fraternité qu'il refusait dans les circonstances présentes et qu'il connaissait bien : les hommes, qui partagent les mêmes chambres, soldats ou prisonniers, contractent un lien étrange comme si, leurs armures quittées avec les vêtements, ils se rejoignaient chaque soir, par-dessus leur différences, dans la vieille communauté du songe et de la fatigue. Mais Daru se secouait, il n'aimait pas ces bêtises, il fallait dormir.

Dans les épaisseurs de la nuit sèche et froide, des milliers d'étoiles se formaient sans trêve et leurs glaçons étincelants, aussitôt détachés, commençaient de glisser insensiblement vers l'horizon. Janine ne pouvait s'arracher à la contemplation de ces feux à la dérive. Elle tournait avec eux et le même cheminement immobile la réunissait peu à peu à son être le plus profond, où le froid et le désir maintenant se combattaient. Devant elle, les étoiles tombaient, une à une, puis s'éteignaient parmi les pierres du désert, et à chaque fois Janine s'ouvrait un peu plus à la nuit. Elle respirait, elle oubliait le froid, le poids des êtres, la vie démente ou figée, la longue angoisse de vivre et de mourir.

every night, when he didn't want to be alone, or to age or die, with that set expression he assumed which she occasionally recognized on other men's faces, the only common expression of those madmen hiding under an appearance of wisdom until the madness seizes them and hurls them desperately toward a woman's body to bury in it, without desire, everything terrifying that solitude and night reveals to them.

il n'y a pas de justes mais des maîtres méchants qui font régner la vérité implacable.

il n'y a pas de justes mais des maîtres méchants qui font ré-gner la vérité implacable. Oui, le fétiche seul a la puissance, il est le dieu unique de ce monde, la haine est son commandement, la source de toute vie, l'eau fraîche, fraîche comme la menthe qui glace la bouche et brûle l'estomac.

Il rêvait et il voulait mentir, on lui a coupé la langue pour que sa parole ne vienne plus tromper le monde.

In the other room Rateau was looking at the canvas, completely blank, in the center of which Jonas had merely written in very small letters a word that could be made out, but without any certainty as to whether it should be read 'solitary' or 'solidary'.

Los hombres que comparten los mismos dormitorios, ya sean soldados o prisioneros, contraen un lazo extraño como si, al quitarse las armaduras con la ropa, se hermanaran cada noche, por encima de sus diferencias, en la vieja comunidad del sueño y del cansancio

Men who share the same rooms, soldiers or prisoners, develop a strange alliance as if, having cast off their armour with their clothing, they fraternized every evening, over and above their differences, in the ancient community of dream and fatigue.

No breath, no sound, except at times the muffled cracking of stones being reduced to sand and cold, came to disturb the solitude that surrounded Janine. After a moment, however, it seemed to her that a kind of slow gyration was sweeping the sky above her. In the depths of the dry, cold night thousands of stars were formed unceasingly and their sparkling icicles, no sooner detached, began to slip imperceptibly towards the horizon. Janine could not tear herself away from the contemplation of these shifting fires. She turned with them, and the same stationary progression reunited her little by little with her deepest being, where cold and desire now collided. Before her, the stars were falling one by one, then extinguishing themselves in the stones of the desert, and each time Janine opened a little more to the night. She was breathing deeply, she forgot the cold, the weight of beings, the insane or static life, the long anguish of living and dying.

No breath, no sound, except at times the muffled cracking of stones being reduced to sand and cold, came to disturb the solitude that surrounded Janine. After a moment, however, it seemed to her that a king of slow gyration was sweeping the sky above her. In the depths of the dry, cold night thousands of stars were formed unceasingly and their sparkling icicles, no sooner detached, began to slip imperceptibly towards the horizon. Janine could not tear herself away from the contemplation of these shifting fires. She turned with them, and the same stationary progression reunited her little by little with her deepest being, where cold and desire now collided. Before her, the stars were falling one by one, then extinguishing themselves in the stones of the desert, and each time Janine opened a little more to the night. She was breathing deeply, she forgot the cold, the weight of beings, the insane or static life, the long anguish of living and dying.

Not a breath, not a sound—except at intervals the muffled crackling of stones that the cold was reducing to sand—disturbed the solitude and silence surrounding Janine. After a moment, however, it seemed to her that the sky above her was moving in a sort of slow gyration. In the vast reaches of the dry, cold night, thousands of stars were constantly appearing, and their sparkling icicles, loosened at once, began to slip gradually towards the horizon. Janine could not tear herself away from contemplating those drifting flares. She was turning with them, and the apparently stationary progress little by little identified her with the core of her being, where cold and desire were now vying with each other. Before her the stars were falling one by one and being snuffed out among the stones of the desert, and each time Janine opened a little more to the night. Breathing deeply, she forgot the cold, the dead weight of others, the craziness or stuffiness of life, the long anguish of living and dying. After so many years of mad, aimless fleeing from fear, she had come to a stop at last. At the same time, she seemed to recover her roots and the sap again rose in her body, which had ceased trembling. Her whole belly pressed against the parapet as she strained towards the moving sky; she was merely waiting for her fluttering heart to calm down and establish silence within her. The last stars of the constellations dropped their clusters a little lower on the desert horizon and became still. Then, with unbearable gentleness, the water of night began to fill Janine, drowned the cold, rose gradually from the hidden core of her being and overflowed in wave after wave, rising up even to her mouth full of moans. The next moment, the whole sky stretched out over her, fallen on her back on the cold earth.

Quelle bouillie, quelle bouillie ! Il faut mettre de l'ordre dans ma tête. Depuis qu'ils m'ont coupé la langue, une autre langue, je ne sais pas, marche sans arrêt dans mon crâne, quelque chose parle, ou quel-qu'un, qui se tait soudain et puis tout recommence ô j'entends trop de choses que je ne dis pourtant pas, quelle bouillie, et si j'ouvre la bou-che, c'est comme un bruit de cailloux remués. De l'ordre, un ordre, dit la langue, et elle parle d'autre chose en même temps, oui j'ai toujours désiré l'ordre !!