“shells, bones and silence”

the_waves_virginia_woolf_cover-676x1024The roar of the traffic, the passage of undifferentiated faces, this way and that way, drugs me into dreams; rubs the features from faces. People might walk through me.

And what is this moment of time, this particular day in which I have found myself caught? The growl of traffic might be any uproar – forest trees or the roar of wild beasts. Time has whizzed back an inch or two on its reel; our short progress has been cancelled.

I think also that our bodies are in truth naked. We are only lightly covered with buttoned cloth; and beneath these pavements are shells, bones and silence.

— Virginia Woolf, from The Waves (1931).

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