Materialist Love

You won’t find this on a greeting card:

At this time, so far as I know, I was particularly anguished by the disappearance of a woman whom I shall not name, in order not to go against her wishes. This anguish had essentially to do with the impossibility for me of determining the social reasons that were to separate us forever, as I already knew. Sometimes these reasons occupied the whole space of my knowledge, already very clouded by the absence of any objective trace of this disappearance itself; sometimes, despair being stronger than any valid mode of thought, I would founder in the pure and simple horror of living without knowing how I could live, how I could continue living. I have never suffered so much (this is an understatement) from someone’s absence and from loneliness as from her presence elsewhere, where I was not, and from what I could imagine, in spite of everything, of her joy over some trifle, of her sadness, or her ennui on some day when the sky sank too low. The sudden impossibility of appreciating her reactions to life one by one has always been able to plunge me to my lowest depths. Still today I cannot conceive that as tolerable, and I shall never conceive it to be so. Love, seen from a materialistic point of view, is in no way a sickness not to be confessed.