…and here I am again, sitting in their wing chair and dissembling once more: I’m not really here in their apartment in the Gentzgasse, I’m only pretending to be in their apartment, I said to myself. I’ve always pretended to them about everything—I’ve pretended to everybody about everything. My whole life has been a pretense, I told myself in the wing chair—the life I live isn’t real, it’s a simulated life, a simulated existence. My whole life, my whole existence has always been simulated—my life has always been pretense, never reality, I told myself. And I pursued this idea to the point at which I actually believed it.
Thomas Bernhard, Woodcutters
She thinks of dying sometimes, of a last will and testament, of cremation, the bone ash of her incinerated body mixed with kaolin, china stone, silicate, lime—oh, what potter would take on this commission for a lonely man? And yet, Why Not? his lover set upon the table, tea set, chocolate set, coffee set, why not lips upon her always, his tongue against the thin bone china lips her fired bones would make?
Michelle Latiolais, “Pink” (from Widow)
She wondered all the same how much they really had to say to one another, given that they had only this city in common and a similar way of talking, the same intonation, perhaps she’d just wanted to believe after that third whiskey on the roof garden at the Hilton that he would give her back something she’d lost, a missing taste, an intonation gone flat, that ghostly feeling of home, though she was no longer at home anywhere.
Ingeborg Bachmann, Simultan: Erzählungen