We enjoy the immense freedom of dreams, in which nobody believes, except as a joke, to share on coming down to breakfast.
Children are not expected to think, but are allowed to suffer, and rehearse the future… In at the windows floats the scent of hot, wet nettles and the long summer. The yellow dressing-table drawers are smelling of emptiness. We have not arranged our things, who will not be staying long in this house.
O childhood of moonlight [and] solid statues! How solid, I broke off an arm to prove, and the smell of the wound was the smell of gunpowder and frost. Often the footsteps were not mine that fell along the gravel paths…other voices would carry my song out of my control… All were turning gravely in the dance, only I was the prisoner of stone.
When I no longer expected, then I was rewarded by knowing: so it is. We do not meet but in distances, and dreams are the distance brought close. The glossy mornings are trampling horses. The rescue-rope turns to hair. Prayer is, indeed, stronger, but what is strong?
O childhood, O illusions, time does not break your chain of coloured handkerchiefs, nor fail to produce the ruffled dove….
–Patrick White, Voss