June 8, 2010

Why I can't imagine a serious relationship in another language

“I kissed him on the cheek and suddenly understood the distance that separates words from communion. You need very many words and even more pauses, and thousands of tiny motions, so slight that they are barely noticeable even to the trained eye; you need an even larger palette of tones, merely to signal misunderstanding; you have to pass through all of this before you reach a state where you know that your meaning and your words are one, no more and no less, and that they are instantaneously grasped by the person for whom they are meant. Before you achieve this, you need recourse to many lies.”

From Leaves of Narcissus, by Somaya Ramadan (Egyptian), from The Anchor Book of Modern Arabic Fiction.

1 comment:

  1. Another thought-provoking post. All of this is true, but I believe that such relationships are possible...


Yay for comments! Nothing mean please, and that means you, Anonymous.