Woolf finds a small mark on the wall and transforms it into a deluge of thoughts – perfectly connected, exquisitely disjointed – that grabs one's soul and tears it asunder, just to repair it by the end of her story, of her interior monologue, leaving the scars of memory and possibility forever burning inside one's head. My favorite kind of writing. A writer gives you her thoughts, and the need for a complex plot vanishes into thin air.
The tree outside the window taps very gently on the pane ... I want to think quietly, calmly, spaciously, never to be interrupted, never to have to rise from my chair, to slip easily from one thing to another, without any sense of hostility, or obstacle. I want to sink deeper and deeper, away from the surface, with its hard separate facts.
But thoughts have no owner, they answer to no master. So when you can't think of trees, a pleasant thing to think about according to Woolf, don't worry, there’s no harm in putting a full stop to one’s disagreeable thoughts by looking at a mark on the wall. Only for a while, though. The thought of spending an entire life just looking at a mark on the wall, ah, what a dreadful thought.