writing another's writing

from Barthes, A Lover's Discourse

“We are our own demons”

démons / demons

It occasionally seems to the amorous subject that he is possessed by a demon of language which impels him to injure himself and to expel himself—according to Goethe’s expression—from the paradise which at other moments the amorous relation constitutes him.

1. A specific force impels my language toward the harm I may do to myself: the motor system of my discourse is the wheel out of gear: language snowballs, without any tactical thought of reality. I seek to harm myself, I expel myself from my paradise, busily provoking within myself the images (of jealousy, abandonment, humiliation) which can injure me; and I keep the wound open, I feed it with other images, until another wound appears and produces a diversion.

Shall I always be writing within the framework of quoted passages? Briefly inserting myself, filling the spaces, only to retreat again into the silence of insecurity, immaturity, an unsteady hand trying out its fingers for the first time. When do I grow legs with toes to accompany the arms and hands that began their spread long ago, when the first marks I made carved poetry into the tree?

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