Monday, September 17, 2012

One year on, 82 years on...

I've been reading Isherwood, and made a note to myself to copy out the section below.  Then, coincidentally, today's the one year anniversary, marked somehow or other, of Occupy Wall Street, and the helicopters were buzzing all about my office window.  So how could I not paste this here?  PP 48 of the New Directions copy of the Berlin Diary half of Isherwood's Berlin Stories:
We all three went to the balcony of Clive’s room.  Sure enough, the street below was full of people.  They were burying Hermann Muller.  Ranks of pale steadfast clerks, government officials, trade union secretaries - the whole drab weary pageant of Prussian Social Democracy - trudged past under their banners towards the silhouetted arches of the Brandenburger Tor, from which the black streamers stirred slowly in an evening breeze.
"Say, who was this guy, anyway?” asked Clive, looking down.  “I guess he must have been a big swell?”  
“God knows,” Sally answered, yawning.  “Look, Clive darling, isn’t it a marvellous sunset?”  
She was quite right.  We had nothing to do with those Germans down there, marching, or with the dead man in the coffin, or with the words on the banners.  In a few days, I thought, we shall have forfeited all kinship with the ninety-nine per cent. of the population of the world, with the men and women who earn their living, who insure their lives, who are anxious about the future of their children.  Perhaps in the Middle Ages people felt like this, when they believed themselves to have sold their souls to the Devil.  It was a curious, exhilarating, not unpleasant sensation: but all the same, I felt slightly scared.  Yes, I said to myself, I’ve done it now.  I am lost.

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