MARIE: They brought you in and placed you on the bed...I kissed you and you were still supple and almost warm...Pierre, my Pierre, you are there, calm as a poor wounded man resting in his sleep, his head bandaged. Your face is sweet, as if you dream. Your lips, which I used to call hungry, are livid and colorless...I kissed your eyelids...We put you in the coffin Saturday morning, I held your head...Your coffin was closed and I could see you no more...We saw you go down into that big deep hole.
I was alone with the coffin and I put my head against it...I spoke to you. I told you that I loved you and that I had always loved you with all my heart...It seemed to me that from this cold contact of my forehead with the casket something like a calm or an intuition came to me from which I would yet find the courage to live. Was this an illusion or was it an accumulation of energy coming from you and condensing in the closed casket which thus came to me as an act of charity on your part?
My Pierre, I got up after having slept rather well, relatively calm. That was barely a quarter of an hour ago, and now I want to howl again - like a savage beast.