Joakim Garff Quotes
“As we read through this small pile of correspondence, a curious duplicity gradually emerges. In their language, the letters are among Kierkegaard’s most outstanding achievements so far as a writer. The pen no longer pauses with the ink bleeding onto the paper; the creaky Latin syntax that once could force Kierkegaard’s language into lackluster constructions is here replaced by a beguiling suppleness that lifts the lines from the page. They steal gently around their subject and draw on well-known Danish writers, such as Johannes Ewald, Jens Baggesen, Adam Oehlenschläger, Christian Winter, and Poul Martin Møller. Far from being ordinary communication, these letters are art.
Therein lies the triumph and the tragedy. For the letters, by virtue of their undeniably aesthetic quality, almost cry out to the writer that a husband is not at all what he is to become, but an author. This makes them in effect letters of “farewell that try, with great discretion and an ingenious indirectness, to make the recipient understand that the man who celebrates her up and down the page has long ago vanished from her life because he has lost himself in recollection of her. His love is bound in artifice and imagination, and he has to accept the truth of the situation, that he is in real life unsuited to the married state. From the recollection that gives life to imagination there spreads also the death that parts the lovers.”