Moments from Proust V. “Mon chéri Marcel”

Albumleaf 188: February 2, 2022 (Bologna)

There are people whose faces assume an unaccustomed beauty and majesty the moment they cease to look out of their eyes.

I would run my eyes over [Albertine], stretched out below me. From time to time a slight, unaccountable tremor ran through her, as the leaves of a tree are shaken for a few moments by a sudden breath of wind. . . .

It was gratifying to me . . . that when she alighted from the car in the afternoon, it should be to my house that she was returning. It was even more so to me that when, from the underworld of sleep, she climbed the last steps of the staircase of dreams, it was in my room that she was reborn to consciousness and life. . . . Then she would find her tongue and say: “My–” or “My darling–” followed by my first name, which, if we give the narrator the same name as the author of this book, would be “My Marcel,” or “My darling Marcel.”

Marcel Proust
The Captive, p. 73, 77
Translation: C.K. Scott Moncrief and Terence Kilmartin