One has just been sent out as a biblical dove, has found nothing green, and slips back
into the darkness of the ark -- Kafka

Sunday, October 18, 2015

From Coetzee's "The Childhood of Jesus"


     'Well, in my opinion you are out of your mind, handing over your child to a stranger who for all you know has a dubious past.'
     'That's nonsense, Elena. Ines has no past, none that counts. None of us has a past. We start anew here. We start with a blank slate, a virgin slate. And Ines is not a stranger. I recognized her as soon as I set eyes on her, which means I must have some kind of prior know-ledge.'
     'You arrive here with no memories, with a blank slate, yet you claim to recognize faces from the past. It makes no sense.'
     'It is true: I have no memories. But images still persist, shades of images. How that is I can't explain. Something deeper persists too, which I call the memory of having a memory. It is not from the past that I recognize Ines but from elsewhere. It is as if the image of her were embedded in me. I have no doubts about her, no second thoughts. At least, I have no doubt that she is the boy's true mother.'
     'Then what doubts do you have?'
     'I only hope she will be good for him.' 
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