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«... but the clouds ...»
After putting on stage a dialogue between actor and tape recording in «Krapp’s Last Tape» in 1958, Beckett went one step further when aged over sixty and made plays for television. Between 1966 and 1985, he produced with Süddeutsche Rundfunk four television dramas which in their intensity and radical reduction are related with the video art of the period.
Beckett's second play for television again recounts the tale of a man and an absent woman. The man keeps returning to an unspecified home, in order to think of his loved one, to plead with her. And sometimes she shows up – but often only to disappear again the next instant, or sometimes to stay, or even to repeat one unvarying, inaudible phrase – «... but the clouds ...» In «999 cases but 1, or 998 cases but 2,» however, she fails to appear. Then he occupies himself with «nothing – that treasure-trove.»