Oh, nothing. Give me your hand—no, your right hand.
How heavy it is. Feel how cold mine are. Go on, tell me all about it. It’s so interesting.
What’s there to tell? They are a brave set of people, I must admit; but it is a bravery of the head, not of the hands. And their heads are partitioned off into little chambers; they are always careful not to do anything which is unnecessary or harmful. Now you can’t clear a dense forest by cutting down one tree at a time, can you? That’s what they do. While they chop at one end, it grows up at the other. You can’t accomplish anything that way; it’s labor lost. I proposed a scheme to them, something on a larger scale. They got frightened, wouldn’t hear of it. A little weak-kneed they are. So I left them. Let them practise virtue. A narrow-minded bunch. They lack breadth of vision.
You say it as calmly as if you were joking.
No, I am not joking.
Aren’t you afraid?
I? So far I haven’t been, and I don’t ever expect to be. What worse can happen to a man than to have been born? It’s like asking a man who is drowning whether he is not afraid of getting wet. (Laughs)
So that’s the kind you are.
One thing I learned from them: respect for dynamite. It’s a powerful instrument, dynamite is—nothing like it for a convincing argument.
You are only twenty-three years old. You have no beard yet, not even a moustache.
SAVVA (feeling his face)
Yes, a measly growth; but what conclusions do you draw from that?
Fear will come to you yet.
No. If I haven’t been frightened so far by watching life, there’s nothing else to fear. Life, yes. I embrace the earth with my eyes, the whole of it, the entire little planetoid, and I can find nothing more terrible on it than man and human life. And I am not afraid of man.
LIPA (scarcely listening to him; ecstatically)