She wanted to slip out of her complex mind;
she wanted to slip
out of the museum of many names,
where each thing is inventoried, ordered, shelved;
she wanted to find a place
where the shell of language was soft enough
for her to edge her way
into the silent heat before thought ever was.
And each morning she would wake
with the half-formed memory of escape
still on her lips, the dishevelment
of her night’s journey.
And the same old familiar world was all around her,
and oh, it was lovely, it was terribly beautiful;
she would stretch her arms towards the sky outside,
try to keep her mind empty and innocent.
But always, before she could stop them, the layers were there:
the thick, multiple scatter of many words,
the sheltering clothes against her naked skin.
- Jacques Coetzee