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中英:月亮和六便士(41)

2006-08-22 21:38

    Chapter XLI

    We arrived at the house in which I lived. I would not ask him to come in with me, but walked up the stairs without a word. He followed me, and entered the apartment on my heels. He had not been in it before, but he never gave a glance at the room I had been at pains to make pleasing to the eye. There was a tin of tobacco on the table, and, taking out his pipe, he filled it. He sat down on the only chair that had no arms and tilted himself on the back legs.

    "If you're going to make yourself at home, why don't you sit in an arm-chair?" I asked irritably.

    "Why are you concerned about my comfort?"

    "I'm not, " I retorted, "but only about my own. It makes me uncomfortable to see someone sit on an uncomfortable chair. "

    He chuckled, but did not move. He smoked on in silence, taking no further notice of me, and apparently was absorbed in thought. I wondered why he had come.

    Until long habit has blunted the sensibility, there is something disconcerting to the writer in the instinct which causes him to take an interest in the singularities of human nature so absorbing that his moral sense is powerless against it. He recognises in himself an artistic satisfaction in the contemplation of evil which a little startles him; but sincerity forces him to confess that the disapproval he feels for certain actions is not nearly so strong as his curiosity in their reasons. The character of a scoundrel, logical and complete, has a fascination for his creator which is an outrage to law and order. I expect that Shakespeare devised Iago with a gusto which he never knew when, weaving moonbeams with his fancy, he imagined Desdemona. It may be that in his rogues the writer gratifies instincts deep-rooted in him, which the manners and customs of a civilised world have forced back to the mysterious recesses of the subconscious. In giving to the character of his invention flesh and bones he is giving life to that part of himself which finds no other means of expression. His satisfaction is a sense of liberation.

    The writer is more concerned to know than to judge.

    There was in my soul a perfectly genuine horror of Strickland, and side by side with it a cold curiosity to discover his motives. I was puzzled by him, and I was eager to see how he regarded the tragedy he had caused in the lives of people who had used him with so much kindness. I applied the scalpel boldly.

    "Stroeve told me that picture you painted of his wife was the best thing you've ever done. "

    Strickland took his pipe out of his mouth, and a smile lit up his eyes.

    "It was great fun to do. "

    "Why did you give it him?"

    "I'd finished it. It wasn't any good to me. "

    "Do you know that Stroeve nearly destroyed it?"

    "It wasn't altogether satisfactory. "

    He was quiet for a moment or two, then he took his pipe out of his mouth again, and chuckled.

    "Do you know that the little man came to see me?"

    "Weren't you rather touched by what he had to say?"

    "No; I thought it damned silly and sentimental. "

    "I suppose it escaped your memory that you'd ruined his life?" I remarked.

    He rubbed his bearded chin reflectively.

    "He's a very bad painter. "

    "But a very good man. "

    "And an excellent cook, " Strickland added derisively.

    His callousness was inhuman, and in my indignation I was not inclined to mince my words.

    "As a mere matter of curiosity I wish you'd tell me, have you felt the smallest twinge of remorse for Blanche Stroeve's death?"

    I watched his face for some change of expression, but it remained impassive.

    "Why should I?" he asked.

    "Let me put the facts before you. You were dying, and Dirk Stroeve took you into his own house. He nursed you like a mother. He sacrificed his time and his comfort and his money for you. He snatched you from the jaws of death. "

    Strickland shrugged his shoulders.

    "The absurd little man enjoys doing things for other people. That's his life. "

    "Granting that you owed him no gratitude, were you obliged to go out of your way to take his wife from him? Until you came on the scene they were happy. Why couldn't you leave them alone?"

    "What makes you think they were happy?"

    "It was evident. "

    "You are a discerning fellow. Do you think she could ever have forgiven him for what he did for her?"

    "What do you mean by that?"

    "Don't you know why he married her?"

    I shook my head.

    "She was a governess in the family of some Roman prince, and the son of the house seduced her. She thought he was going to marry her. They turned her out into the street neck and crop. She was going to have a baby, and she tried to commit suicide. Stroeve found her and married her. "

    "It was just like him. I never knew anyone with so compassionate a heart. "

    I had often wondered why that ill-assorted pair had married, but just that explanation had never occurred to me. That was perhaps the cause of the peculiar quality of Dirk's love for his wife. I had noticed in it something more than passion. I remembered also how I had always fancied that her reserve concealed I knew not what; but now I saw in it more than the desire to hide a shameful secret. Her tranquillity was like the sullen calm that broods over an island which has been swept by a hurricane. Her cheerfulness was the cheerfulness of despair. Strickland interrupted my reflections with an observation the profound cynicism of which startled me.

    "A woman can forgive a man for the harm he does her, " he said, "but she can never forgive him for the sacrifices he makes on her account. "

    "It must be reassuring to you to know that you certainly run no risk of incurring the resentment of the women you come in contact with, " I retorted.

    A slight smile broke on his lips.

    "You are always prepared to sacrifice your principles for a repartee, " he answered.

    "What happened to the child?"

    "Oh, it was still-born, three or four months after they were married. "

    Then I came to the question which had seemed to me most puzzling.

    "Will you tell me why you bothered about Blanche Stroeve at all?"

    He did not answer for so long that I nearly repeated it.

    "How do I know?" he said at last. "She couldn't bear the sight of me. It amused me. "

    "I see. "

    He gave a sudden flash of anger.

    "Damn it all, I wanted her. "

    But he recovered his temper immediately, and looked at me with a smile.

    "At first she was horrified. "

    "Did you tell her?"

    "There wasn't any need. She knew. I never said a word. She was frightened. At last I took her. "

    I do not know what there was in the way he told me this that extraordinarily suggested the violence of his desire. It was disconcerting and rather horrible. His life was strangely divorced from material things, and it was as though his body at times wreaked a fearful revenge on his spirit. The satyr in him suddenly took possession, and he was powerless in the grip of an instinct which had all the strength of the primitive forces of nature. It was an obsession so complete that there was no room in his soul for prudence or gratitude.

    "But why did you want to take her away with you?" I asked.

    "I didn't, " he answered, frowning. "When she said she was coming I was nearly as surprised as Stroeve. I told her that when I'd had enough of her she'd have to go, and she said she'd risk that. " He paused a little. "She had a wonderful body, and I wanted to paint a nude. When I'd finished my picture I took no more interest in her. "

    "And she loved you with all her heart. "

    He sprang to his feet and walked up and down the small room.

    "I don't want love. I haven't time for it. It's weakness. I am a man, and sometimes I want a woman. When I've satisfied my passion I'm ready for other things. I can't overcome my desire, but I hate it; it imprisons my spirit; I look forward to the time when I shall be free from all desire and can give myself without hindrance to my work. Because women can do nothing except love, they've given it a ridiculous importance. They want to persuade us that it's the whole of life. It's an insignificant part. I know lust. That's normal and healthy. Love is a disease. Women are the instruments of my pleasure; I have no patience with their claim to be helpmates, partners, companions. "

    I had never heard Strickland speak so much at one time. He spoke with a passion of indignation. But neither here nor elsewhere do I pretend to give his exact words; his vocabulary was small, and he had no gift for framing sentences, so that one had to piece his meaning together out of interjections, the expression of his face, gestures and hackneyed phrases.

    "You should have lived at a time when women were chattels and men the masters of slaves, " I said.

    "It just happens that I am a completely normal man. "

    I could not help laughing at this remark, made in all seriousness; but he went on, walking up and down the room like a caged beast, intent on expressing what he felt, but found such difficulty in putting coherently.

    "When a woman loves you she's not satisfied until she possesses your soul. Because she's weak, she has a rage for domination, and nothing less will satisfy her. She has a small mind, and she resents the abstract which she is unable to grasp. She is occupied with material things, and she is jealous of the ideal. The soul of man wanders through the uttermost regions of the universe, and she seeks to imprison it in the circle of her account-book. Do you remember my wife? I saw Blanche little by little trying all her tricks. With infinite patience she prepared to snare me and bind me. She wanted to bring me down to her level; she cared nothing for me, she only wanted me to be hers. She was willing to do everything in the world for me except the one thing I wanted: to leave me alone. "

    I was silent for a while.

    "What did you expect her to do when you left her?"

    "She could have gone back to Stroeve, " he said irritably. "He was ready to take her. "

    "You're inhuman, " I answered. "It's as useless to talk to you about these things as to describe colours to a man who was born blind. "

    He stopped in front of my chair, and stood looking down at me with an expression in which I read a contemptuous amazement.

    "Do you really care a twopenny damn if Blanche Stroeve is alive or dead?"

    I thought over his question, for I wanted to answer it truthfully, at all events to my soul.

    "It may be a lack of sympathy in myself if it does not make any great difference to me that she is dead. Life had a great deal to offer her. I think it's terrible that she should have been deprived of it in that cruel way, and I am ashamed because I do not really care. "

    "You have not the courage of your convictions. Life has no value. Blanche Stroeve didn't commit suicide because I left her, but because she was a foolish and unbalanced woman. But we've talked about her quite enough; she was an entirely unimportant person. Come, and I'll show you my pictures. "

    He spoke as though I were a child that needed to be distracted. I was sore, but not with him so much as with myself. I thought of the happy life that pair had led in the cosy studio in Montmartre, Stroeve and his wife, their simplicity, kindness, and hospitality; it seemed to me cruel that it should have been broken to pieces by a ruthless chance; but the cruellest thing of all was that in fact it made no great difference. The world went on, and no one was a penny the worse for all that wretchedness. I had an idea that Dirk, a man of greater emotional reactions than depth of feeling, would soon forget; and Blanche's life, begun with who knows what bright hopes and what dreams, might just as well have never been lived. It all seemed useless and inane.

    Strickland had found his hat, and stood looking at me.

    "Are you coming?"

    "Why do you seek my acquaintance?" I asked him. "You know that I hate and despise you. "

    He chuckled good-humouredly.

    "Your only quarrel with me really is that I don't care a twopenny damn what you think about me. "

    I felt my cheeks grow red with sudden anger. It was impossible to make him understand that one might be outraged by his callous selfishness. I longed to pierce his armour of complete indifference. I knew also that in the end there was truth in what he said. Unconsciously, perhaps, we treasure the power we have over people by their regard for our opinion of them, and we hate those upon whom we have no such influence. I suppose it is the bitterest wound to human pride. But I would not let him see that I was put out.

    "Is it possible for any man to disregard others entirely?" I said, though more to myself than to him. "You're dependent on others for everything in existence. It's a preposterous attempt to try to live only for yourself and by yourself. Sooner or later you'll be ill and tired and old, and then you'll crawl back into the herd. Won't you be ashamed when you feel in your heart the desire for comfort and sympathy? You're trying an impossible thing. Sooner or later the human being in you will yearn for the common bonds of humanity. "

    "Come and look at my pictures. "

    "Have you ever thought of death?"

    "Why should I? It doesn't matter. "

    I stared at him. He stood before me, motionless, with a mocking smile in his eyes; but for all that, for a moment I had an inkling of a fiery, tortured spirit, aiming at something greater than could be conceived by anything that was bound up with the flesh. I had a fleeting glimpse of a pursuit of the ineffable. I looked at the man before me in his shabby clothes, with his great nose and shining eyes, his red beard and untidy hair; and I had a strange sensation that it was only an envelope, and I was in the presence of a disembodied spirit.

    "Let us go and look at your pictures, " I said.

    我们走到我住的房子。我不想对他说什么“请进来坐”这类的客气话,而是一言不发地自己走上了楼梯。他跟在后面,踩着我的脚后跟走进我的住房。他过去从来没到我这地方来过,但对我精心布置的屋子连看也不看一眼。桌子上摆着一铁罐烟草,他拿出烟斗来,装了一斗烟。接着,他坐在一把没有扶手的椅子上,身体往后一靠,跷起椅子的前腿。

    “要是你想舒服一下,为什么不坐在安乐椅上?”我忿忿地问道。

    “你为什么对我的舒适这么关心?”

    “我并不关心,”我反驳说,“我关心的是自己。我看见别人坐在一把不舒服的椅子上自己就觉得不舒服。”

    他咯咯地笑了笑,但是没有换地方。他默默地抽着烟斗,不再理睬我;看来他正在沉思自己的事。我很奇怪他为什么到我这地方来。

    作家对那些吸引着他的怪异的性格本能地感到兴趣,尽管他的道德观不以为然,对此却无能为力;直到习惯已成自然,他的感觉变得迟钝以后,这种本能常常使他非常狼狈。他喜欢观察这种多少使他感到惊异的邪恶的人性,自认这种观察是为了满足艺术的要求;但是他的真挚却迫使他承认:他对于某些行为的反感远不如对这些行为产生原因的好奇心那样强烈。一个恶棍的性格如果刻划得完美而又合乎逻辑,对于创作者是具有一种魅惑的力量的,尽管从法律和秩序的角度看,他决不该对恶棍有任何欣赏的态度。我猜想莎士比亚在创作埃古①时可能比他借助月光和幻想构思苔丝德梦娜②怀着更大的兴味。说不定作家在创作恶棍时实际上是在满足他内心深处的一种天性,因为在文明社会中,风俗礼仪迫使这种天性隐匿到潜意识的最隐秘的底层下;给予他虚构的人物以血肉之躯,也就是使他那一部分无法表露的自我有了生命。他得到的满足是一种自由解放的快感。

    ①莎士比亚戏剧《奥瑟罗》中的反面人物。

    ②《奥瑟罗》主人公奥瑟罗的妻子。

    作家更关心的是了解人性,而不是判断人性。

    我的灵魂对思特里克兰德确实感到恐怖,但与恐怖并存的还有一种叫我心寒的好奇心:我想寻找出他行为的动机。他使我困惑莫解,他对那些那么关怀他的人制造了一出悲剧,我很想知道他对自己一手制造的这出悲剧究竟抱什么态度。我大胆地挥舞起手术刀来。

    “施特略夫对我说,你给他妻子画的那幅画是你的最好的作品。”

    思特里克兰德把烟斗从嘴里拿出来,微笑使他的眼睛发出亮光。

    “画那幅画我非常开心。”

    “为什么你要给他?”

    “我已经画完了。对我没有用了。”

    “你知道施特略夫差点儿把它毁掉吗?”

    “那幅画一点儿也不令人满意。”

    他沉默了一会儿,接着又把烟斗从嘴里拿出来,呵呵地笑出声来。

    “你知道那个小胖子来找过我吗?”他说。

    “他说的话没有使你感动吗?”

    “没有。我觉得他的话软绵绵的非常傻气。”

    “我想你大概忘了,是你把他的生活毁了的,”我说。

    他沉思地摩挲着自己长满胡须的下巴。

    “他是个很蹩脚的画家。”

    “可是他是个很好的人。”

    “还是一个手艺高超的厨师,”思特里克兰德嘲弄地加添了一句。

    他心肠冷酷到没有人性的地步,我气愤得要命,一点儿也不想给他留情面。

    “我想你可以不可以告诉我——我问这个问题只是出于好奇——,你对勃朗什。施特略夫的惨死良心上一点儿也不感到内疚吗?”

    我瞅着他的脸,看他的面容有没有什么变化,但是他的脸仍然毫无表情。

    “为什么我要内疚?”

    “让我把事情的经过向你摆一摆。你病得都快死了,戴尔克。施特略夫把你接到自己家里,象你亲生父母一样服侍你。为了你,他牺牲了自己的时间、金钱和安逸的生活。他把你从死神的手里夺了回来。”

    思特里克兰德耸了耸肩膀。

    “那个滑稽的小胖子喜欢为别人服务。这是他的习性。”

    “就说你用不着对他感恩,难道你就该霸占住他的老婆?在你出现在他们家门以前,人家生活得非常幸福。为什么你非要插进来不可呢?”

    “你怎么知道他们生活得幸福?”

    “这不是明摆着的事吗?”

    “你什么事都看得很透。你认为他为她做了那件事,她会原谅他?”

    “你说的是什么事?”

    “你不知道他为什么同她结婚吗?”

    我摇了摇头。

    “她原来是罗马一个贵族家里的家庭教师,这家人的少爷勾引了她。她本以为那个男的会娶她做妻子,没想到却被这家人一脚踢了出来。她快临产了,想要自杀。这时候施特略夫发现了她,同她结了婚。”

    “施特略夫正是这样一个人。我从来没有见过哪个人象他那样富于侠义心肠的。”

    原先我就一直奇怪,这一对无论从哪一方面讲都不相配的人是怎么凑到一块儿的,但是我从来没有想过竟会是这么一回事。戴尔克对他妻子的爱情与一般夫妻的感情很不相同,原因也许就在这里。我发现他对她的态度有一些超过了热情的东西。我也记得我总是怀疑勃朗什的拘谨沉默可能掩藏着某种我不知道的隐情。现在我明白了,她极力隐藏的远远不止是一个令她感到羞耻的秘密。她的安详沉默就象笼罩着暴风雨侵袭后的岛屿上的凄清宁静。她有时显出了快活的笑脸也是绝望中的强颜欢笑。我的沉思被思特里克兰德的话声打断了,他说了一句非常尖刻的话,使我大吃一惊。

    “女人可以原谅男人对她的伤害,”他说,“但是永远不能原谅他对她做出的牺牲。”

    “你这人是不会引起同你相识的女人恼恨的,这一点你倒可以放心。”我顶了他一句。

    他的嘴角上浮现起一丝笑容。

    “你为了反驳别人从来不怕牺牲自己的原则。”他回答说。

    “那个孩子后来怎么样了?”

    “流产了,在他们结婚三、四个月之后。”

    这时我提出了最使我迷惑不解的那个问题。

    “你可以不可以告诉我为什么你要招惹勃朗什。施特略夫?”

    他很久很久没有回答,我几乎想再重复一遍我的问题了。

    “我怎么知道?”最后他说,“她非常讨厌我,几乎见不得我的面,所以我觉得很有趣。”

    “我懂了。”

    他突然一阵怒火上撞。

    “去他妈的,我需要她。”

    但是他马上就不生气了,望着我,微微一笑。

    “开始的时候她简直吓坏了。”

    “你对她说明了吗?”

    “不需要。她知道。我一直没有说一句。她非常害怕。最后我得到了她。”

    在他给我讲这件事的语气里,我不知道有一种什么东西,非常奇特地表示出他当时的强烈的欲望。它令人感到惊措不安,或者甚至可以说非常恐怖。他平日的生活方式很奇特,根本不注意身体的需求。但是有些时候他的肉体却好象要对他的精神进行一次可怕的报复。他内心深处的那个半人半兽的东西把他捉到手里,在这种具有大自然的原始力量的天性的掌心里他完全无能为力。他被牢牢地抓住,什么谨慎啊,感恩啊,在他的灵魂里都一点儿地位也没有了。

    “但是你为什么要把她拐走呢?”我问。

    “我没有,”他皱了皱眉头说,“当她说她要跟着我的时候,我差不多同施特略夫一样吃惊。我告诉她当我不再需要她的时候,她就非走开不可,她说她愿意冒这个险。”思特里克兰德停了一会。“她的身体非常美,我正需要画一幅裸体画。等我把画画完了以后,我对她也就没有兴趣了。”

    “她可是全心地爱着你啊。”

    他从座位上跳起来,在我的小屋子里走来走去。

    “我不需要爱情。我没有时间搞恋爱。这是人性的一个弱点。我是个男人,有时候我需要一个女性。但是一旦我的情欲得到了满足,我就准备做别的事了。我无法克服自己的欲望,我恨它,它囚禁着我的精神。我希望将来能有一天,我会不再受欲望的支配,不再受任何阻碍地全心投到我的工作上去。因为女人除了谈情说爱不会干别的,所以她们把爱情看得非常重要,简直到了可笑的地步。她们还想说服我们,叫我们也相信人的全部生活就是爱情。实际上爱情是生活中无足轻重的一部分。我只懂得情欲。这是正常的,健康的。爱情是一种疾病。女人是我享乐的工具,我对她们提出什么事业的助手、生活的侣伴这些要求非常讨厌。”

    思特里克兰德从来没有对我一次讲这么多话。他说话的时候带着一肚子的怒气。但是不论是这里或是在其他地方,我都不想把我写下来的假充为他的原话。思特里克兰德的词汇量很少,也没有组织句子的能力,所以一定得把他的惊叹词、他的面部表情、他的手势同一些平凡陈腐的词句串联起来才能弄清楚他的意思。

    “你应该生活在妇女是奴隶、男人是奴隶主的时代。”我说。

    “偏偏我生来是一个完全正常的男人。”

    他一本正经地说了这么一句话,不由得又使我笑起来。他却毫不在意地只顾说下去,一边在屋子里走来走去。但是尽管他全神贯注地努力想把自己感觉到的表达出来,却总是辞不达意。

    “要是一个女人爱上了你,除非连你的灵魂也叫她占有了,她是不会感到满足的。因为女人是软弱的,所以她们具有非常强烈的统治欲,不把你完全控制在手就不甘心。女人的心胸狭窄,对那些她理解不了的抽象东西非常反感。她们满脑子想的都是物质的东西,所以对于精神和理想非常妒忌。男人的灵魂在宇宙的最遥远的地方邀游,女人却想把它禁锢在家庭收支的账簿里。你还记得我的妻子吗?我发觉勃朗什一点一点地施展起我妻子的那些小把戏来。她以无限的耐心准备把我网罗住,捆住我的手脚。她要把我拉到她那个水平上;她对我这个人一点也不关心,唯一想的是叫我依附于她。为了我,世界上任何事情她都愿意做,只有一件事除外:不来打搅我。”

    我沉默了一会儿。

    “你离开她以后想到她要做什么吗?”

    “她满可以回到施特略夫身边去的,”他气冲冲地说,“施特略夫巴不得她回去的。”

    “你不通人性,”我回答说。“同你谈这些事一点用也没有,就象跟瞎子形容颜色一样。”

    他在我的椅子前边站住,低下头来望着我;我看出来他脸上的表情满含轻蔑,又充满了惊诧。

    “勃朗什。施特略夫活着也好,死了也好,难道你真的那么关心吗?”

    我想了想他提出的这个问题,因为我想真实地回答,无论如何一定要是我的真实思想。

    “如果说她死了对我一点儿也无所谓,那我也未免太没有人心了。生活能够给她的东西很多,她这样残酷地被剥夺去生命,我认为是一件非常可怕的事。但是我也觉得很惭愧,因为说实在的,我并不太关心。”

    “你没有勇气坦白承认你真正的思想。生命并没有什么价值。勃朗什。施特略夫自杀并不是因为我抛弃了她,而是因为她太傻,因为她精神不健全。但是咱们谈论她已经够多的了,她实在是个一点也不重要的角色。来吧,我让你看看我的画。”

    他说话的样子,倒好象我是个小孩子,需要他把我的精神岔开似的。我气得要命,但与其说是对他倒不如说对我自己。我回想起这一对夫妻——施特略夫同他的妻子,在蒙特玛特尔区一间舒适的画室中过的幸福生活,他们两人淳朴、善良、殷勤好客,这种生活竟由于一件无情的偶然事件被打得粉碎,我觉得这真是非常残忍的;但是最最残忍的还是,这件事对别人并没有什么影响。人们继续生活下去,谁也没有因为这个悲剧而活得更糟。我猜想,就连戴尔克不久也会把这件事遗忘,因为尽管他反应强烈,一时悲恸欲绝,感情却没有深度。至于勃朗什自己,不论她最初步入生活时曾怀有何等美妙的希望与梦想,死了以后,同她根本没有降临人世又有什么两样?一切都是空虚的,没有意义的。

    思特里克兰德拿起了帽子,站在那里看着我。

    “你来吗?”

    “你为什么要同我来往?”我问他,“你知道我讨厌你,鄙视你。”

    他咯咯地笑了笑,一点也没有恼怒。

    “你同我吵嘴,实际上是因为我根本不在乎你对我的看法。”

    我感到自己的面颊气得通红。你根本无法使他了解,他的冷酷、自私能叫人气得火冒三丈。我恨不得一下子刺穿了他那副冷漠的甲胄。但是我也知道,归根结底,他的话也不无道理。虽然我们没有明确意识到,说不定我们还是非常重视别人看重不看重我们的意见、我们在别人身上是否有影响力的;如果我们对一个人的看法受到他的重视,我们就沾沾自喜,如果他对这种意见丝毫也不理会,我们就讨厌他。我想这就是自尊心中最厉害的创伤。但是我并不想叫思特里克兰德看出我这种气恼。

    “一个人可能完全不理会别人吗?”我说,与其说是问他还不如说是问我自己,“生活中无论什么事都和别人息息相关,要想只为自己、孤零零地一个人活下去是个十分荒谬的想法。早晚有一天你会生病,会变得老态龙钟,到那时候你还得爬着回去找你的同伙。当你感到需要别人的安慰和同情的时候,你不羞愧吗?你现在要做的是一件根本不可能的事。你身上的人性早晚会渴望同其他的人建立联系的。”

    “去看看我的画吧!”

    “你想到过死吗?”

    “何必想到死?死有什么关系?”

    我凝望着他。他一动不动地站在我面前,眼睛里闪着讥嘲的笑容。但是尽管他脸上是这种神情,一瞬间我好象还是看到一个受折磨的、炽热的灵魂正在追逐某种远非血肉之躯所能想象的伟大的东西。我瞥见的是对某种无法描述的事物的热烈追求。我凝视着站在我面前的这个人,衣服褴褛,生着一个大鼻子和炯炯发光的眼睛,火红的胡须,蓬乱的头发。我有一个奇怪的感觉,这一切只不过是个外壳,我真正看到的是一个脱离了躯体的灵魂。

    “好吧,去看看你的画吧。”我说。

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