Thursday, November 24, 2011

Collage 597

A surreal scene. Here a few key sentences. The actual description in the book is much longer.

"The criminals were place in a certain order, which was on the list (Pierre was sixth), and led to the post. Several drums suddenly began to beat on both sides, and Pierre felt that with this sound it was as if part of his soul was torn away. He lost the ability to think and reason. He could only see and hear." 

"The convicts, having gone to the post, stopped and, while the sacks were brought, looked silently around them, as a wounded animal looks at the approaching hunter. One kept crossing himself, the other kept scratching his back and made a movement with his lips similiar to a smile." 

"Pierre, much as he tried to recall later, did not hear the slightest sound of the shots. He only saw how the factory worker suddenly slumped down in the ropes for some reason, how blood appeared in two places, and how the ropes became loose under weight of the sagging body, and the factory worker sat down, lowering his head and tucking his legs under unnaturally. Pierre ran to the post. No one held him back. Frightened, pale people were doing something around the factory worker. The lower jaw of one old, mustached Frenchman was trembling as he untied the ropes." 

"They all obviously knew without question that they were criminals, who had to quickly conceal the traces of their crime." -- Otto

Otto Mayr
from page 449-450, volume 2 of original text
collage, fire, acrylic paint
made 9/2/11
Pevear/Volokhonsky translation page 966-967

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