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KSRK: Anyone Left?

My dear reader–but to whom am I speaking? Perhaps no one at all is left. Probably the same thing has happened to me in reverse as happened to that noble king whom a sorrowful message taught to hurry, whose precipitous ride to his dying beloved has been made unforgettable by the unforgettable ballad in its celebration of the hundred young men who accompanied him from Skanderborg, the fifteen who rode with him over the Randbol Heath, but when he crossed the bridge at Ribe the noble lord was alone. The same, in reverse, to be sure, and for opposite reasons, happened to me, who, captivated by one idea, did not move from the spot–all have ridden away from me. In the beginning, no doubt, the favorably disposed reader reined in his swift steed and thought I was riding a pacer, but when I did not move from the spot, the horse (that is, my reader) or, if you please, the rider, became impatient, and I was left behind alone: nonequestrian or Sunday rider whom everybody outrides.

S. Kierkegaard, Stages on Life’s Way, Hong translation, p. 485.

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