Outline

Rachel Cusk

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7 Fragments (saved in 2018)

Their shared world of imagination ceased, and the reason was that one of them — I can't even recall which one it was — stopped believing in it. In other words, it was nobody's fault; but all the same it was brought home to me how much of what was beautiful in their lives was the result of a shared vision of things that strictly speaking could not have been said to exist.

It was impossible, I said in response to his question, to give the reasons why the marriage had ended: among other things a marriage is a system of belief, a story, and though it manifests itself in things that are real enough, the impulse that drives it is ultimately mysterious. What was real, in the end, was the loss of the house, which had become the geographical location for things that had gone absent and which represented, I supposed, the hope that they might one day return. To move from the house was to declare, in a way, that we had stopped waiting.

I suppose, I said, it is one definition of love, the belief in something that only the two of you can see.

What you don't know and don't make an effort to understand will become the very thing you are forced into the knowledge of.

The worst thing, it seemed to her, was to be dealing with one version of a person when quite another version existed out of sight.

And of those two ways of living - living in the moment and living outside it - which was more real?

I would like to see the world more innocently again, more impersonally, but I have no idea how to achieve this, other than by going somewhere completely unknown, where I have no identity.