Black Books

  1. XII. 1923.

Text of the dream: I am on military service. Marching with a battalion. In a wood by Ossingen

I come across excavations at a crossroads: l meter high stone :figure of a frog or a toad without a head.

Behind this sits a boy with a toad’s head.

Then the bust of a man with an anchor hammered into the region of his heart, Roman. A second bust from around 1640, the same motif.

Then mummified corpses.

Finally there comes a barouche in the style of the XVII century. In it sits someone who is dead, but still alive.

She turns her head, when I address her as “Miss”; I am aware that “Miss” is a title of nobility.

8/9 II 1924.

They came in the night. Many in an invisible horde. They drifted past my house. I woke up when they went past.

I went out to see and didn’t know where they came from and where they were going. They came from the East and wandered to the West.

On both sides they streamed past my house. I heard them stumble over the big stones.

Peoples of the future, unborn dead. Wherefrom and whereto? Don’t you want to stop? What do you seek? Are you seeking the word?

Stop, here is Philemon’s temple, a cabin that covers our poverty of spirit. What can I give you?

No great utterance, only silence and a whisper of the inexpressible, which came to pass.

A mouth of mine unfit to speak of or even to cry out what has come to pass.

A certitude that something has come to pass, and a not-knowing of what has come to pass. Would you like to sit at this humble table?

And have a meal with me, in silence, perhaps the walls will speak, perhaps it will speak from the :fire, perhaps the stones will whisper something to you? From whom?

You don’t know him, since he is not to be grasped, the supremely great one that passed by and robbed me of speech.

And therefore I have to stammer to you and you will laugh and, alas-not understand what happened.

And yet he stood near us, so near, so tangible as never before. He spoke to me, he :filled me with the breath of eternity.

Why did he choose a stutterer? Why should I announce him?

The Gods sit down with the beggars, they come as guests to the hungry and celebrate the divine meal on empty tables I am transformed by this, isolated, silent.

No words can express what happened, what :filled me.

16 Nov. 1926

The years go by. I have been to Africa, seeking. Whom? Probably him, the unknown one, the God or the fate-fortifying one.

I didn’t find him there. What does the voice say? I never found him outside. Good, then I come back. Was this a voice?

Should my soul not have become silent? Have you not become silent? Hasn’t everything flowed into outer fate? Speak to me again!

S. You are held outside.

[I]. Yes, that I am, and must it not be so?

S. What must be?

[I]. It is so. Better if you give me light, where I don’t see- or let me dream. ~The Black Books, Vol. VII, Page 234-235