"Nothing but monsters"

11 octubre 2007

“Ahh, now I know. Now I know where I am. And who I am. Back in that old shithole of New York where I was born, the place where I knew nothing but starvation, humiliation, despair, frustration… every goddamn thing. Nothing but misery. Every bloody street I look down I see nothing but misery, nothing but monsters. Of course, this was the New York that I knew when I was being born, or rather I didn't know it yet. Later, when I began to explore it, why, it's a different city, a little more horrible.

It gets worse all the time. Today, I think it's the ugliest, filthiest, shittiest city in the world. When I was a kid, there was hardly anything that we have today - no telephones, no automobiles...no nothing, really. It was rather quaint. There was color even, in the buildings. But as time went on, why, it got more horrible to me. When I think of the Brooklyn bridge, which was the only bridge then in existence...how many times I walked over that bridge on an empty stomach, back and forth, looking for a handout, never getting anything...selling newspapers at Times Square, begging on Broadway, coming home with a dime maybe.

It's no wonder that I had these goddamned recurring nightmares all my life. I don't know how I ever survived, or why I'm still sane. In fact, I don't know now whether I'm awake or dreaming. My whole past seems like one long dream, punctured with nightmares”. Henry Miller