letting go of consciousness

More from John Steinbeck


March 6, 1951, Tuesday.  “No sleep last night but I feel fine.  And I don’t even know why I didn’t sleep.  I was perfectly comfortable.  Just couldn’t let go of consciousness.  Funny thing.” 

Journal of a Novel:  The East of Eden Letters

I couldn’t sleep last night, and I don’t know why either.  I too was perfectly comfortable.  But I felt like my fingers were clawing the ceiling and refusing to let go, despite my brain saying, don’t think about that now.

Despite his lack of sleep, Steinbeck writes, “Now, once to the toilet and I will go to work.”  Then, “It is so strange what one writes down.”  After a space break,

“And there’s that day’s work done.”

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