“I would give my soul to find a new love, yet in all these years there has been no one else possible… Those whom I have loved and longed for have always been impossible or out of reach. Those whom I have met and who would have been possible, I could not love. It is not that I cannot love any other woman, I know I can only too well, only it is never the right woman. Those I love do not love me. And love is life to me.” September 1931
After meeting Sorina in his office (see Episode 23), Dick wrote obsessively about her in the weeks that followed. Here are some further extracts from those journal entries.
It is clear that Dick was under the impression that Sorina was much younger than she was. The following day, with typical romance and hyperbole, he wrote,
Ich denke immer nach an Sorina. Nur Sorina.
She will have had my letter this evening, perhaps she is thinking of me too. No, that is too much to hope.
It is many years since I had such feelings. Sorina has disturbed me entirely by her mere presence and all that means. At the same time, I am glad of it. I know that only sorrow can come out of our relations, and yet I shall welcome the sorrow in place of the long blankness, the utter voidness of these last years.
Sorina did not come into the office today. I was glad because I wanted her to get my letter before we met again. I think she will very likely come tomorrow… I long to meet her again. All the while I see before me the sweet little Madonna face, so keen and young and intelligent. Her clear blue eyes and light shortcut hair. Her beautifully brown skin and her slim youthful figure, so well clothed, with clothes of such good taste. Inevitably it must end in sorrow. And yet I know I would rather have it do so, than not have it at all, even though there are tears in my eyes as I write. The coming of Sorina into my life has released something within me that seems to have been chained down for years and years. It is a blessed release. I feel it like a flight into infinity.
I believe that when Frau Eicke came into the office two months ago, she said that she had a child. It occurred to me today that it is the very impossibility of our relations that makes it so utterly desirable and enticing. If it were easy there would be no desire. That is what is so perverse in life.
Dick seems to enjoy wallowing in his sense of impending tragedy. Later in the week, he acknowledges his tendency to make a drama of life.
I always regard my life as a story, and I know secretly the drama is greater than comedy. That is not to say that I act my life… I am absolutely genuine and sincere, that I know. What I do, I cannot help doing - it is inevitable. But at the same time, I know that I cannot help contemplating my life from the outside with the eye of the author.
After a few days of anxious waiting and fretful journal entries, Sorina came back to the office.
The door opened and in came Sorina, a vision of beauty. It was too wonderful. I asked Sorina if she would come and have tea with me at Lyons Corner House and she did. It was too marvelous - marvelous. Sorina was quite different from last time - far, far nicer and friendlier. I know that she enjoyed being with me. It was all beyond my wildest dreams. I found no difficulty in asking Sorina if I might send her my story Trio to read, because I knew that I had a great longing that she should read it. Sorina said she would love to, so I shall send it tomorrow. I have also persuaded Sorina to go to the ‘Grand Hotel’ with me, and we shall go to a matinee next week, on Wednesday I expect. I can hardly wait. I am so, so happy. This is one of the happiest things that has ever happened in my life. Of course, Sorina cannot realise the significance of her coming just at this time. Oh, it is wonderful, however it may end. I told her that I realised she was married and did not want to do or ask her to do anything that could in any way be unpleasant for her and she was charming about this.
As Dick continued to write obsessively about Sorina throughout the week, he tries to work out her family situation.
Oh, I am so in love. This thing called love again. Love with all its joys and agonies. All the while I want to be with her so much, it seems that every minute we are not together is wasted and every minute when we are together is an ecstasy.
But I do not know what will happen. Sorina is married and has a son. Obviously then she cannot give herself to me. Clearly, there can be no fulfillment. I must not even kiss her, not even touch her. For my sake, I wish I could learn that she hated her husband and had divorced him or some such thing. But I love her so much that, for her sake, I can only hope that she is very, very happily married. I wonder? I thought I noticed a very faint to dark line under her eyes on Thursday. That may be due to financial worries. I know that she has letters from her little son, so I think that probably means she is very happily married. But however old can her son be if he can write? He must be at least six. It is unbelievable that Sorina can have a son of six.
At their next meeting, Dick learns the truth.
I had no time to write before now. Wednesday has come and gone, and likewise Sorina. We met at the Adelphi Theatre and saw 'Grand Hotel'. I was much disappointed in the play and did not think it’s anything like as good as the book.
However, it was delightful to be with Frau Eicke, although I am sure now that I do not mean a thing to her. Also, I am sure that my story Trio did not make any real impression upon her either, although she was very kind and polite about it. I do not think Wednesday really went off as well as could have been desired, although matters improved a good deal afterwards, when we had tea together. Sorina grows ever more interesting. She told me things that caused me a great deal of surprise without in any way decreasing my admiration for her - chiefly that she has not one son, but three sons. One of them is 12 years old. He is the youngest! The eldest is 19, and the middle one 16. Really it is absolutely unbelievable. For a long while, I thought she was joking. But she swore it was not a joke and I know that it is true. Frau Eicke said that nobody could believe it. It is rather strange to think that she might be my mother almost. At the same time, it is quite wonderful to have a son of 19 and to only look 24 or 26.
Dick seems to be completely blinded by love. One week after they first meet, he starts to write about things that she says to him, which begin to give us clues as to Sorina's personality.
Today has been charming because Sorina came this morning looking prettier and younger than ever... I have never in my life met so beautiful a woman as Sorina, and she has so much more than beauty besides. Sorina knows all this perfectly well and does not hesitate to mention it, which is so fresh of her. She knows quite well that she has only got to smile at a man and he will be her servant for life. Whenever she wants anything she just gives one of her smiles and she gets it. She takes it for granted that all men will love her and she is invariably right. She knows that she has the most perfect body - it was she who pointed the fact out to me herself when she first told me she wanted to be a model. There is no false modesty about Sorina. At the same time, she is anything but an adventuress, although I doubt whether she ever gives an atom of thought to the feelings of those upon whom she bestows her fatal smiles. Sorina is a young goddess and noticeably takes all that is justly due to her.
By December, Sorina is starting to let him down. When she stands him up at a dinner date, he writes,
I cannot understand Sorina at all. She had not come on Friday simply because she had been very busy writing letters, so busy that she could not even ring me up to say that she could not come. Really it is incredible and I find it impossible to understand women. How can anyone be so inconsiderate? I think it is that they like to measure their power over men and to see just how much they can get away with. It is unfortunate that I am always slave to the woman I love. And yet I have wondered which is the more unfortunate - I because I must love, or Sorina because she must not love.