Monday, July 30, 2012

Unless the phenomenon occurs before our eyes, we tend not to understand that it can occur at all. We lump it in the category of those things that have been described by experts in the field but only after they have emerged from a very deep sleep. The sort that can alter the color of your hair overnight or make you forget who you are for a moment and where you are located and why no one will speak to you any more when you show up at the corner store to purchase a bottle of cola. I liken the experience to hunting big game but not being able to locate any, realizing after the safari is over that you didn’t even bring enough ammunition with you to go around and that if something had indeed charged you from the long grass, you would have been doomed unless there happened to be a suitably tall acacia tree in the vicinity to scale. Not that I wish the outcome would have been different. I spend my days happily whittling twigs and sitting in the mouth of a cave that overlooks the area where Immanuel and Eulalie have decided to settle, or at least that part of it that isn’t concealed by perpetual rain clouds and a blind spot produced by the abrupt topography this region is known for. Panic sets in around twilight and lingers for an hour or two each evening, but I have grown adept at keeping it at bay through various techniques I will relate when the time is right, when I no longer feel they are necessary. Trying to unlock those secrets prematurely, trying to wrest them from my fingers, so to speak, before I am ready to turn them loose upon the world, will only strengthen my resolve, will only succeed in making my teeth sore from my grinding them together in exasperation, as can be attested to by the diminutive human being who showed up here last Tuesday, I think it was, though I have long since lost the use of anything approximating a calendar in the deep dark tissues of my mind. What use could such an adaption be out here where the scenery never changes, where there are no crops to be put in and no fear, ever, of missing the important festival dates and celebrations for one be-feathered, lopsided deity or another? The man spoke a language I did not recognize, though I pretended to understand every syllable he uttered, nodding almost always in the affirmative until such time as he produced a primitive tin blade and forced my hand. I am not proud of the outcome, nor am I filled with the shame that keeps some people from penning their own definite autobiographies. And I do not admit now something I would refuse to admit under oath, but I can assure you the man still draws breath and spends some time on the front porch with his family before trotting off into town, despite their protests which follow him almost all the way there like mongrel dogs, where he tells stories that sound an awful lot like this one, with the exception that they rarely come to a definite end (or so I’m told). They meander about like cetaceans with little but the wide, featureless blue oceans of the world to contain them.   

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