Yet you wouldn't have called me if you were innocent. Guilt is the one burden human beings can't bear alone. As soon as a crime is committed, there is a telephone call, or a confession to strangers. There is only one relief: to confess, to be caught, tried, punished. That's the ideal of every criminal. But it's not quite so simple. Only half of the self wants to atone, to be freed of the torments of guilt.
The other half of man wants to continue to be free. So only half of the self surrenders, calling out 'catch me,' while the other half creates obstacles, difficulties; seeks to escape. It's a flirtation with justice. If justice is nimble, it will follow the clue with the criminal's help. If not, the criminal will take care of his own atonement. I think so. I think we are more severe judges of our own acts than professional judges. We judge our thoughts, our intents, our secret curses, our secret hates, not only our acts.
The lie detector called up the operator, gave orders to have the call traced. It came from a bar. Half an hour later, he was sitting there. He did not allow his eyes to roam or examine. He wanted his ears alone to be attentive, that he might recognize the voice. Dressed in red and silver, she evoked the sounds and imagery of fire engines as they tore through the streets of New York, alarming the heart with the violent gong of catastrophe; all dressed in red and silver, the tearing red and silver cutting a pathway through the flesh.
The first time he looked at her he felt: everything will burn! Out of the red and silver and the long cry of alarm to the poet who survives in all human beings, as the child survives in him; to this poet she threw an unexpected ladder in the middle of the city and ordained, Climb! She could not sit still. She talked profusely and continuously with a feverish breathlessness like one in fear of silence.
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She sat as if she could not bear to sit for long; and, when she rose to buy cigarettes, she was equally eager to return to her seat. Impatient, alert, watchful, as if in dread of being attacked, restless and keen, she drank hurriedly; she smiled so swiftly that he was not even certain it had been a smile; she listened only partially to what was being said to her; and, even when someone in the bar leaned over and shouted a name in her direction, she did not respond at first, as if it were not her own.
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue? Upload Sign In Join. Home Books Contemporary Fiction. Save For Later. Create a List. Summary Originally published in book form in , this authoritative edition of Anais Nin's A Spy in the House of Love contains Nin's introduction, character descriptions, publishing history, and an author's chronology. Consider the following passage, which describes Sabina's encounter with Philip, whom she has met in a nightclub: "The trembling premonitions shaking the hand, the body, made dancing unbearable, waiting unbearable, smoking and talking unbearable.
Read on the Scribd mobile app Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere. What is it? I had to talk to someone; I can't sleep.
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I had to call someone. You have something to confess Don't you know who I am? Why a stranger? You could call a friend. A stranger doesn't ask questions. But it's my profession to ask questions.
Who are you? A lie detector.
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Are you there? I thought you would hang up. There was no crime. Is that worse? She hung up. When she ordered a drink, he lifted his eyes from his newspaper. Only her ladder led to fire. He looked at her again with a professional frown. Start your free 30 days. Page 1 of 1. Close Dialog Are you sure?
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