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Life is a fountain of delight; but where the rabble also drinks all wells are poisoned. . . . Many a one who went into the desert and suffered thirst with beasts of prey merely did not wish to sit around the cistern with dirty camel-drivers. . . . Here, in the extremest height, the fountain of delight gushes up for me! And here there is a life at which no rabble drinks with me! . . . Gone is the lingering affliction of my spring! Gone the malice of my snowflakes in June! Summer have I become entirely, and summer-noonday! Rewritten in the style of “In the desert of science”, this passage from Zarathustra would be extended to several pages; and the latter is in turn only a stage towards a style even more compressed in which almost every statement is metaphorical, and thus has in a sense to be interpreted before it can be understood, yet acts with the directness of impact normally attainable only by plain prose (i.e. prose whose implications are all on the surface):

Let us look one another in the face. We are Hyperboreans – we know well enough how much out of the way we live. “Neither by land nor by sea shalt thou find the road to the Hyperboreans”: Pindar already knew that of us. Beyond the North, beyond the ice, beyond death – our life, our happiness . . . We have discovered happiness, we know the road, we have found the exit out of whole millennia of labyrinth. Who else has found it ? – Modern man perhaps? – “I know not which way to turn; I am everything that knows not which way to turn” – sighs modern man. . . . It was from this modernity that we were ill – from lazy peace, from cowardly compromise, from the whole virtuous uncleanliness of modern Yes and No. This tolerance and largeur of heart which “forgives” everything because it “understands” everything is sirocco to us. Better to live among ice than among modern virtues and other south winds! . . . We were brave enough, we spared neither ourselves nor others: but for long we did not know where to apply our courage. We became gloomy, we were called fatalists. Our fatality – was the plenitude, the tension, the blocking-up of our forces. We thirsted for lightning and


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