Agua Viva

Clarice Lispector

I'm trying to write to you with my whole body.

It's like moments I had with you, when I would love you, moments I couldn't go past because I descended into their depths. It's a state of touching the surrounding energy and I shudder. Some mad, mad harmony.

What I tell you should be read quickly like when you look.

I want the inconclusive. I want the profound organic disorder that nevertheless hints at underlying order. The great potency of potentiality. These babbled phrases of mine are made the very moment they're being written and are so new and green they crackle. They are now. I want the experience of the lack of construction. [...] Life really just barely escapes me though the certainty comes to me that life is other and has a hidden style.

It suddenly occurred to me that you don't need order to live. There is no pattern to follow and the pattern itself doesn't even exist: I am born.

What is called a beautiful landscape causes me nothing but fatigue

I'm going to make an adagio. Read slowly and with peace. It's a wide fresco.

The halo is more important than the things and the words.

I have started to communicate so strongly with you that I stopped being while still existing. You became an I.

I’m tired. My tiredness comes often because I’m an extremely busy person: I look after the world. Every day I look from my terrace at a section of beach and sea and see the thick foam is whiter and that during the night the waters crept forward uneasy. I see this by the mark which the waves leave upon the sand. I look at the almond trees on the street where I live. Before going to sleep I look after the world and see if the night sky is starry and navy blue because on certain nights instead of being black the sky seems to be an intense navy blue, a color I’ve painted in stained glass. I like intensities.

To live this life is more an indirect remembering than a direct living.

For each one of us and at some lost moment of life — is a mission announced that we must accomplish? I however refuse any mission. I won’t accomplish anything: I just live.

But what can I do if you are not touched by my defects, whereas I loved yours. My candour was crushed underfoot by you. You didn't love me, only I know that. I was alone. Yours alone. I write to no one and a riff is being made that doesn't exist. I unglued myself from me. And I want disarticulation, only then am I in the world. Only then do I feel right.

Now – silence and slight amazement.

Ah living is so uncomfortable. Everything pinches: the body demands, the spirit doesn't stop, living is like being tired and not being able to sleep — living is bothersome. You can't walk naked either in body or in spirit.