Page:Hunger (Hamsun).djvu/123

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107
Hunger

body. Oh, did I not draw a breath of delighted relief! I flung myself flat on the floor and cried for very joy over this blessed glimpse of light, sobbed for very gratitude, blew a kiss to the window, and conducted myself like a maniac. And at this moment I was perfectly conscious of what I was doing. All my dejection had vanished; all despair and pain had ceased, and I had at this moment, at least as far as my thought reached, not a wish unfulfilled. I sat up on the floor, folded my hands, and waited patiently for the dawn.

What a night this had been!

That they had not heard any noise! I thought with astonishment. But then I was in the reserved section, high above all the prisoners. A homeless Cabinet Minister, if I might say so.

Still in the best of humours, with eyes turned towards the lighter, ever lighter square in the wall, I amused myself acting Cabinet Minister; called myself Von Tangen, and clothed my speech in a dress of red-tape. My fancies had not ceased, but I was far less nervous. If I only had not been thoughtless enough to leave my pocket-book at home! Might I not have