If only he could put the clock back and be

once more the man who, at the outset of his

imprisonment, had only one thought and one desire: to escape

and return to his former life! But that, he knew,

was out of the question; he had changed too greatly.

Prison had forced on him a detachment which, try as

he might, he couldn’t think away, and which like a

formless fear haunted his mind. Almost he thought that prison

had ended too abruptly, he hadn’t had time to pull

himself together. Freedom was bearing down on him full speed.


Paraphrases from the novel The Plague by Albert Camus.