Dark Back of Time
Translated by Esther Allen.
Chatto & Windus: 2003. First British edition. Hardcover in a jacket. Near fine. Slight shelfwear on the corners of the boards and along the edges of the jacket.
"I don't know why the 31st of December and 1922 are given as the date and year of his death, when there are no witnesses - not even the person who killed him was a witness, and had no certainty of having killed - and he could well have died during the first hour or first minute of January 1, who knows, and therefore in 1923. It's frightening to think of the hours - soon distant and forgotten, yet so slow and negligible while they're going by - during which our friends and relatives think we're alive when in fact we are dead, and they sleep peacefully, dreaming their primitive dreams, or watch television or curse or fuck instead of dropping everything and running belatedly to meet us and make phone calls and attend to formalities and not believe it, and grieve and despair, to whatever degree. This fear isn't for the dead, for their imagined solitude and abandonment, but for the living who will later have to reconstruct those hours - the acutal passage of which is now unusable and annulled, and which are even slower and more neglible on memory - that they lived through unaware their world had changed."