Monday, January 9, 2012

Affix support braces to the walls and still there is a rumbling sound, a vibration that seems to emanate directly from them, from inside rather than where you would expect it to, namely the ridges and fault lines that run for some distance along the horizon. We can’t always see the horizon but we know it is there because people refer to it constantly. It seems to be one of those things in the world without which we could not orient ourselves. We could not stand up straight for any length of time. In this we are very similar to the bean plants and other vegetation the elderly never tire of planting around their otherwise run down houses. Not that we need the comparison to make sense, to be coherent the way ordinary speech is coherent until you introduce narcotics or lesions on the brain. But still, we have certain verbal expectations and when these are violated, we feel as if we have steered, quite by accident, into a world nearly identical to our own, but with certain key differences as well. Long straight patches where nothing happens. The conspicuous absence of birds. Anda straddles me, takes the crooked emanation into herself as easily as if she had been created specifically for this moment. The sensation is not at all what I had come to expect given the descriptions of it one finds in periodicals or the loose talk of acquaintances when they don’t realize their every word is being memorized by someone with a vested interest in what is being said. It is a category of bliss, to be sure, one at the very top of that ladder, but the operations of the mind do not cease and the operations of the body follow a logic all too familiar to anyone who has stayed too long in bed in the morning and found himself rubbing absently against the bed sheets because there is nothing else available to rub against. Anda makes noises I try for a while to emulate, but there seems to be no reason for this and she shoots me a quizzical look out of the corner of her eye at one point which makes me feel self-conscious. So I begin instead to speak out loud the filthiest things that come to mind. That they come to mind at this moment with almost no prodding strikes me as something just shy of a miracle, the sort of thing that occurs, apparently, at regular intervals the further back you go in time. But which has now all but dried up (if one can, in fact, rely on a comparison using the organic concept of moisture or the lack thereof to capture the entirely inorganic concept of the miraculous). With the possible exception, now and then, of burn patterns on ordinary pieces of bread. Or someone snapping a bungee cord above a river and living to tell the tale. Even if she breaks a collarbone in the process. Even if she emerges covered in contusions. But make no mistake. There is no apparent structure to these contusions at all. They seem entirely random in their distribution, as if to call into question the concept of the guiding hand at precisely the same time the outcome of the event itself seems to verify it, seems indeed to insist on it in quite the haunting vox alto.