Occupational Hazard

” ‘They have read your novel,’ began Woland, turning to the Master, ‘and they said only one thing, that, unfortunately, it is not finished. So I wanted to show you your hero. He has been sitting here for about two thousand years, sleeping, but, when the moon is full, he is tormented, as you see, by insomnia. And it torments not only him, but his faithful guardian, the dog. If it is true that cowardice is the most grave vice, then the dog, at least, is not guilty of it. The only thing that brave creature ever feared was thunderstorms. But what can be done, the one who loves must share the fate of the one he loves.

‘What is he saying?’ asked Margarita, and her utterly tranquil face was covered by a veil of compassion.

‘He says,’ Woland’s voice rang out, ‘the same thing over and over. That the moon gives him no peace and that he has a bad job. That is what he always says when he cannot sleep, and when he does sleep, he always sees the same thing – a path of moonlight, and he wants to walk on that path, and talk with the prisoner Ha-Notsri, because, as he keeps maintaining, he did not finish what he wanted to say long ago, on the fourteenth day of the spring month of Nisan. But, alas, for some reason, he never does manage to walk on the path, and no one comes to see him. So there is nothing for him to do except talk to himself. Some variety is necessary, however, so when he talks about the moon, he frequently adds that he hates his immortality and unprecedented fame more than anything in the world. He maintains that he would gladly change places with the ragged wanderer, Levi Matvei.”

Mikhail Bulgakov, The Master and Margarita

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s