Skip to content →

Comfort Hunger texts

As hand written on the wall, on a rug, or on a base in a square format. Exterior text in blue marker, interior text in red marker

full image text provided in the paragraphs below

Exterior blue text:

It is altogether curious, your first contact with poverty. You have thought so much about Poverty — it is the thing you have feared all your life, the thing you knew would happen to you sooner or later, and it is all so utterly and prosaically different. You thought it would be quite simple; it is extraordinarily complicated. You thought it would be terrible. It is merely squalid and boring. It is the peculiar lowness of poverty that you discover first. The shifts that it puts you to, the complicated meanness, the crust- wiping. You discover what it is like to be hungry. With bread and margarine in your belly, you go out and look into the shop windows. Everywhere there is food in huge wasteful piles. You discover the boredom, which is inseparable from poverty, the times when you have nothing to do and, being underfed, can interest yourself in nothing. You discover that a (wo)man who has gone even a week on bread and margarine is not a (wo)man any longer, only a belly with a few accessory organs.

— From Down and Out in Paris and London, by George Orwell

Interior red text:

The Secretary did not know what to do with such obtuseness; he was not at all worried about a hunger so far away which full of lunch, he could not credit. His own stomach seemed a bit acid to him, he hid a modest belch. “God knows, ” he said, “what those fellows eat.”

— From “A Mercenary”, a short story by Cynthia Ozick