Tuesday, December 29, 2015

it was as if it came up against another substance

What arrives here, at no matter what moment, coming from fathomless spaces, and lodges itself, encrusts itself here, enlarges and pushes back even farther these infinitely extensible limits … no one can ever know how far they extend … what should have become an integral part of him, a solid, indestructible part what surrounds him too, which seemed capable of enlargement, of extending its limits farther and farther, wasn't able to penetrate there … it was as if it came up against another substance … a strange unknown substance, impenetrable by things that seem to be able to circulate freely everywhere else.

Here, 1995, by Nathalie Sarraute, tr. Barbara Wright

Such storms, called cloud-bursts by the country-folk, are not rain, rather the spillings of Thor's cup, jarred by the Thunderer. After such a one the water that comes up in the village hydrants miles away is white with forced bubbles from the wind-tormented streams.

The Land of Little Rain, 1903, by Mary Austin


  1. love that nathalie! hmm... taxing the imagination is not a new concept, obviously: greek,norse, a plethora of mythologies, everyone claiming the sole possession of truth. quite amazing when one stops to think about it; and after all we wouldn't dream the way we do without all the historical background; always wonder about jungian archetypes; ever since i read memories dreams and reflections years ago i've pondered the possibilities of genetic dreaming. just shows to go, everything is alive and engaged...

  2. Did the Norse ever prosthelytise? It strikes me that I've never heard of them trying to convert anybody.

    1. some danes and the norse migrated to iceland in the early years and there was some connection via eddas between both populations but i don't know enough to say whether they effected each other in that way...

    2. I'm wondering if they had any equivalent to missionaries or prophets, people who went away to unbelieving places and tried to change the focus of the worship there. I've never heard that they did; they seemed to be satisfied with migrating and attacking, and the worship came along with them naturally.