Sunday, June 16, 2013

You can have your well-groomed protagonists stumble into any number of occupied rooms, you can have them paint snails in florescent colors and reveal their scrotums, but the door – the enormous door, that is, the crucial door I have been searching a quarter of the world over for because I dreamt once it existed and I became convinced, not because it was in a dream or because I give any particular credence to dreams but because I am easily convinced, because I take immediately to heart the slimmest or most circular of arguments and the flimsiest bit of evidence – the door is not going to appear suddenly through the use of techniques such as these. You’ll say that doesn’t matter because the door doesn’t exist and I’ll be forced to agree with you. But, at the same time, I’ll be whittling away at pieces of driftwood the neighborhood kids bring me routinely because there is a rumor I have a fortune and will pay cash, upwards of five hundred dollars, for random pieces of junk whenever such junk sparks my imagination. This happens so frequently I am, as a result, inundated and must fight my way to the surface, to the outside world, so that it is no exaggeration to suggest that my life is in danger! I have been within millimeters of suffocation at least three times before! When the cemetery begins to flood, the last of those who have come to illegally unearth their forebears, to whisk them away to a resting place on higher ground, drop their picks and their shovels and they wail at the moon as if they expect to find some condolence there when, in fact, to this point, there has been only silence. A serenity almost mocking in its infinitude. But what do you expect from something so far away it took us a thousand generations to tame? And even then, we did so only at our own peril, one or two at a time, strapped to devices that look now, all these years later, like antique wash tubs or the inventions of a visionary Chinese author from the distant past, inventions the precise use for which has been swallowed up by the significant differences between the language he composed in and the one we use today when we are reading, or just pretending to read. I am all for broadening the focus, for shifting ideas back to their root and origin, but what if the ideas are ideas in name only and when you cut them apart, you find inside merely a kind of blackness, the non-human equivalent of a blank stare? What if they aren’t even tangible the way potatoes are said to be tangible, which means, I suppose, you can hold them in your hands?   

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