In the long list I am the et cetera et cetera.
Listen close; this will be the only time I speak. Please. I have built all this, my home, with the bricks others left behind. My mind is divided between this time and another. Like glass, the man flows too slow to see. From the moment he falls from the sky he is always trying to get back home. I am writing this in rain on the window. I am holding out my fist, some secret trapped inside. Come find me in the mist between your time and mine.
I don't know why I was so shocked by my mother's death. (Later, all he remembered of that journey was the goodbye, not who from.) But what I do remember is the color around her—veiled, but not as you’d expect—a red thread that runs through the veil between worlds, which suggests all lives are fundamentally opaque, their motivations mysterious even to those who live them.
My mother used to collect orange blossoms in a small shallow bowl, the green tree of grace, a man in a blinding haze of light who kept his face hidden. The ideas belong to what is said, and not to what is seen.
But what I remember most is how the women said her name: the words brought her to life; they summed up her history. They are the pitches that make up a game. They careen off the wall and roll into dark corners.
There is no definitive cure for grief, only better questions, which I had decided were meaningless, wanting water and finding death. Like empty bottles, waiting to hold the meaning which life would give them for me, we will ask.
I pass the tree each spring. A time came—not summer's flowering that now lies before us, but a polar night of icy darkness and hardness—when none of us could use the figure without mutilating it, trying to figure out what he may have known.
There is no definitive cure for grief, only better questions, questions with no answer. Because the world is not necessarily this or that, because human beings are as much projects themselves as they may have projects, or a vision, for the world.
Discourse is the path from one contradiction to another: if it gives rise to those that can be seen, it is because it obeys that which it hides. I don't remember seeing her very much, but what I do remember is the color around her. I drag squares of color into their arrangements.
But gradually we begin to feel that the author is distracting our attention from his own characters. He stands there in the headlights surrounded by rain, a mad king calling for his daughters. It looks like he's singing.
Now that the sun was setting he could see his shadow on the blackened slate. Ink on ink, the absence of self as long as he didn't move. But even now I am perhaps not speaking from myself: but from some character in whose soul I now live. Remembering where it used to be.
Autumn brought the rains. “Floods” is the word they use, but in fact it is not flooding; it is remembering. The imagination, green schools of fish that moved like a single body, a guiding force in the reconstruction of reality.
Without the river nothing passes. Without the river stillness. I still love the river, I told her. But I do not love it because it is deep, and fast, and drowns many people. I love it because it runs behind my house, and I have lived above it forever.
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