Sans soleil
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:36:01
I know: it wrote the Bible.
:36:03
The new Bible will be an eternal magnetic tape of a time
that will have to reread itself constantly just to know it existed.

:36:11
As we await the year four thousand and one and its total recall,
:36:15
that's what the oracles we take out of their long hexagonal boxes
at new year may offer us:

:36:21
a little more power over that memory
that runs from camp to camp¬ólike Joan of Arc.

:36:26
That a short wave announcement from Hong Kong radio
picked up on a Cape Verde island projects to Tokyo,

:36:31
and that the memory of a precise color in the street bounces
back on another country, another distance, another music, endlessly.

:36:49
At the end of memory's path,
:36:51
the ideograms of the Island of France are no less enigmatic
than the kanji of Tokyo in the miraculous light of the new year.

:36:57
It's Indian winter, as if the air were the first element
to emerge purified from the countless ceremonies

:37:04
by which the Japanese wash off
one year to enter the next one.

:37:08
A full month is just enough for them to fulfill
all the duties that courtesy owes to time,

:37:13
the most interesting unquestionably being the acquisition
at the temple of Tenjin of the uso bird,

:37:19
who according to one tradition eats all your lies of the year to come,
and according to another turns them into truths.

:37:26
But what gives the street its color in January,
what makes it suddenly different is the appearance of kimono.

:37:33
In the street, in stores, in offices, even at the stock exchange
on opening day, the girls take out their fur collared winter kimono.

:37:42
At that moment of the year other Japanese
may well invent extra flat TV sets,

:37:47
commit suicide with a chain saw,
or capture two thirds of the world market for semiconductors.

:37:50
Good for them;
all you see are the girls.


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