excerpt from “The Twilight World”, by Werner Herzog

At this point, incidentally, a new phenomenon begins. A sort of constant, unobtrusive companionship, a natural dream sibling equipped with all the unquestioning certainty of dreams: a shapeless time of noctambulism.

Even though things carry on as before, immediate, palpable, ghastly, undeniable in their imperiousness the jungle; the swamp; the leeches; the mosquitoes; the screams of the birds; thirst; the bumpy, itching skin. The dream has its own time frame, it races forward and back, sticks, stops dead, holds its breath, jumps ahead like a frightened deer. 

A night bird shrieks and a year passes. A fat drop of water on the waxy leaf of a banana plant glistens briefly in the sun and another year is gone. 

A column of millions and millions of ants arrives overnight and marches through the trees with no beginning or end; the column marches for days and days and then one day is mysteriously and suddenly gone, and that is another year. Then one single watch under withering enemy fire, and the night seems to go on forever and ever. 

Day will not and will not and will not arrive. Time outside their lives seems to have the quality of a spasm, even though it can’t shake the imperturbable universe. 

Onoda’s war is of no meaning for the cosmos, for history, for the course of the war. His war is formed from the union of an imaginary nothing and a dream, but the war, sired by nothing, is nevertheless overwhelming, an event extorted from eternity.