So Vast the Prison, Assia Djebar

For a long time, I believed writing meant dying, slowly dying, gripping to unfold a shroud of sand and silk over things that one had felt trembling and pawing the ground. A burst of laughter-frozen. The beginnings of a sob—turned into stone.

Yes, for a long time I wanted to lean against the dike of memory or against the shadowy light of its other side, to be gradually penetrated by its cold, because as I wrote I recalled myself.

So Vast the Prison, Assia Djebar

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