“Not to make this personal, but–” I was saying, pausing right at the critical emotional impasse, “But this always makes me shudder, this idea of not being in the world, ever again, like I’ve been blitzed, you know, ignored by some ignoramus of a creator-god, and left to disappear like a dried up puddle on the sidewalk.” That sounds good, I thought, if I ever get to speak a piece before my jailors, at present themselves invisible, due to the light trailing in. And I have written elsewhere, and published extensively on this in a more sanguine manner, of how I feel closed out by just the idea of death, and frightened as any child by infinity, not to mention the image of blank unending non-existence. But for some reason it took me until I was, shall we say, cresting at the top of my powers, in full-swing life-mode, to put it wryly, and capable of comprehensively surveying, with gulping glances whole scenes, like happening across the street–it took me until now, in other words, to glimpse the other absurdity of a historical world that reportedly went on for thousands of years without me. I had in fact reached a great calm, and practically a reconciliation with any future, when suddenly the enormity of the time I (apparently) wasn’t in the world struck me like an insult, like a swinging door hitting me in the back. So now, a new, a very great area for revelatory investigation. (That is how I treat these breakthroughs.) And “Ho-hum!”, say my jailors; and “fie on you,” I say back, “who are but nothing but a twisted construction, and a flapping windowshade.” I mean I know people say life is short, but this is ridiculous. Already sanguine about my possibilities of living forever, I now have only to rationalise having come on the scene (the human race) so . . . late. It is the sandwich effect. Sandwiched between two infinities. Is that not comedic? My big toe caught in these two slamming . . . doors!
Well, now, what is going on outside? Looking out the front window at the scene across the street, where the Japanese girl is unloading some things from her car and carrying them into her apartment, it is apparent–quite obviously!, this scene, this reality, belongs to neither of these gigantic fearful terrains. I will repeat that. Neither of these two gigantic fearful terrains. The world of the future become oblivious of me, nor the world of the past that never knew me whatsoever. Ha! If this isn’t hilarious . . . come look, I want to bring everyone to the window. The Japanese girl is taking things from the trunk of her car. Now she is walking toward the steps, now she is at the door, of her new apartment. Voila!
This is the present scene in which history, indeed, is totally implausible. General history! Right out on my street is the scene that admits of neither stretching, fetching death, nor needs a preamble time for silly birthing procedures. It springs fully rigged and decked out, out of nowhere. And here comes the Japanese girl back for another armful; she takes a flowered cushion, some small lamps, out of the car, and cradles a lightweight box, effortlessly, aha!–she tosses that to her ready-made boyfriend, who I hadn’t even noticed. The two of them are suspended in time alright. You could say here are unfinished storylines, that red car is right out of a commercial, you could begin a movie here, but it is all in the present. You would have to begin it here. For history is implausible in connection with virtually every detail, I see. And therefore, I say, these people are not in that history. I am one of them, I am looking, and our consciousness is in fact larger than all of history. Just so! Our consciousness is larger than all of history, way larger, in fact history is a scuff mark, a label on the suitcase. One blooming iris, affixed to the hair of the Japanese girl who swishes by, just so! None of us are there in the books, and you can’t find us, not people like any of us right here on this street, as . . . stepping lightly, she carries the lamps into the house. We were never in that time the books represent, even the books make it clear.
But what this suggests is more drastic still. And that is that such a medium of time was never there. For the past, whatever it was, has produced no route! The Japanese girl, who is now coming back out of the house and going to car once again, is unbelievably attractive in this scene–she is a starlet; for you see we are innately trained like film afficionados, fascinated by the lighting, the novelty like it were all pyrotechnics of the sun, just now dipped down below the eaves.
Later, I go up to the bar and everyone there is in the absolute present. This idea is working. I just keep thinking, “are you telling me thousands of years happened before God decided to have me born,” or some such handle, with that kind of needling intonation, “are you trying to tell me?”, like I was jibing my jailors, taunting the naysayers, deflating the intellectuals, to get to this image of the unique hour in which we dwell. And when I think like that, the whole bar changes, like I just woke up. Everyone is decidedly delirious, with their own immediate emotions and thoughts, and pleased with their fellows, I can tell–it’s like the center of the universe–because, you see, technically it is, the very center.
“Oh, so now, have you abandoned all your learning?” Who said that! Sure, put life in some context, and it disappears. It is incompatible, this hour–it’s in a different register, another color, materially different, discontinuous . . .