Anthony — his brief unspooling

One can get along with Jeffers, Anthony next thought, and Marlow is the one one wants to be like, and so on; they all have their attributes. But who is Anthony, Anthony next thought (his thoughts seeming to make sense to him now — before they did not seem to make quite so much sense.)

Anthony is the one whom — he is the one whom — nothing. Anthony is neither one of them, nor is he really himself: he is not who he is, who they are, who I am, or was or will be — in each person. He is no one, not a person. How then do I proceed if I am not? Should not he who is not one not do, as it is only the one who is who should and actually can do and really does?

Or is someone a no one precisely because he has not yet done –hasn’t “done his homework”, in some sense, so to speak– has failed to make the requisite preparations to be truly someone in a given situation, and act somehow. Now, though I am no one, I strangely feel that not to do would be what a someone would actually do, for all the others (who I’ve believed so far to be distinct) now are doing things together, making them, in a certain sense, indistinct, thought Anthony.

(His thoughts, after this, began to make much less sense, — then ceased to make sense. Like a man climbing stairs with a large spool of electric wire in his arms, who, the higher he got, the more the spool was unwound; and who was beginning to notice there was no wire left in the spool, though he was still climbing the stairs.) “I must now utterly close,” he thought.

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