Perron, Thistles in a Blue Vase, 1928
The pagan blood returns! The Spirit is near, why doesn’t Christ help me by granting my soul nobility and freedom? Alas! The Gospel has passed! The Gospel! The Gospel.
I wait for God with greed. I’ve been of inferior race from all eternity.
Here I am on the Breton shore. How the towns glow in the evening. My day is done: I’m quitting Europe. Sea air will scorch my lungs: lost climates will tan me. To swim, trample the grass, hunt, above all smoke: drink hard liquors like boiling metals – as those dear ancestors did round the fire.
I’ll return with iron limbs; dark skin, a furious look: from my mask I’ll be judged as of mighty race. I’ll have gold: I’ll be idle and brutal. Women care for those fierce invalids returning from hot countries. I’ll be involved in politics. Saved.
Now I’m damned, I have a horror of country. The best is a good drunken sleep on the beach.
One doesn’t go. – Let’s take to the roads again, full of my vice, the vice that has thrust its roots of suffering into my side, since the age of reason – that rises to the sky, strikes me, knocks me down, drags me along.
The last innocence, and the last timidity. I’ve said it. Not to carry my disgust and betrayals through the world.
Let’s go! Marching, burdens, deserts, boredom, anger.
Whom shall I hire myself to? What beast must be adored? What saintly image attacked? What hearts shall I break? What lie must I uphold? – Slosh through what blood?
Rather, protect oneself from justice – a hard life, pure brutalisation – to open the coffin lid with a withered hand; sit down, stop your breath. So no old age, no dangers: to be terrified is un-French.
– Ah! I am so forsaken I could offer any divine image no matter what my urges towards perfection.
O my self-denial, O my marvellous pity! Even down
De profundis Domine, what a creature I am!