Pain has an Element of Blank; poem by Emily Dickinson
Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.
It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.
Ivan Illich, The Nemesis of Medicine:
“Pain is the sign for something not answered; it refers to something open, something that goes on the next moment to demand, What is wrong? How much longer? Why must I/ought I/should I/can I/ suffer?”
Friedrich Nietzsche, My Dog. The Gay Science:
“I have given a name to my pain, and call it “dog”. It is just as faithful, just as importunate and shameless, just as entertaining, just as wise, as any other dog and I can domineer over it, and vent my bad humour on it, as others do with their dogs, servants, and wives.”
Alphonse Daudet, In the Land of Pain:
“Are words actually of any use to describe what pain […] really feels like? Words only come when everything is over, when things have calmed down. They refer only to memory, and are either powerless or untruthful.”