13 August 2014

"Life took me by the shoulder..."

One afternoon soon after her death, I entered her empty room, into which the good evening sun was shining, gladdening it with rose-bright, gay and soft colors. There I saw on the bed the things which the poor lady had till recently worn, her dress, her hat, her sunshade, and her umbrella, and, on the floor, her small delicate boots. The strange sight of them made me unspeakably sad, and my peculiar state of mind made it seem to me almost that I had died myself…. For a long time I looked at Frau Wilke’s possessions, which now had lost their mistress and lost all purpose, and at the golden room, glorified by the smile of the evening sun….

Yet, after standing there dumbly for a time, I was gratified and grew calm. Life took me by the shoulder and its wonderful gaze rested on mine. The world was as living as ever and beautiful as at the most beautiful time. I quietly left the room and went out into the street.
from Frau Wilke by Robert Walser, extracted here.

Matter, a photograph by August Sander (1925), here.

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