Tuesday, January 17, 2006

another proof that brains don't carry a stopwatch.

"Der Sprung in der Teetasse ist ein Weg,
der ins Reich der Toten führt" *), said
W.H. Auden, said Julien Green, says
Botho Strauß.

No, seriously, this was the first
thing that came to mind this
morning when I awoke after
a heavy and dream-drowned
night.

It is at nights when the brutality
of physical laws, also of those
our little log here is consumed
with, comes to a rest. It is
brought to halt for a while, so
our minds can stretch out and
test their real imaginative power.
Our minds exercise a bit in
lighter and more poetic forms
of communication, and this is
where the dead come in.

Much to my surprise, I was
greeted tonight by our
beloved cat, which has in fact
been dead and vanished for
quite some time now. It strutted
around, a bit hesitant, and seemed
to show off the new necklaces it
was wearing. Two shiny
reflecting rainbow-coloured bands,
which we would have never dared
to put around its neck

[although we might have been
able to say goodbye to her, if we had
back then], plus something
that reminded me of those name tags
ill-tempered members of the ground
personnel use to put on my suitcase.

Soon it was chased around by
its brother tomcat, as ever, and
left before I could call in my
partner to greet our guest.

And so do all the other
significant dead pay a visit
one or the other night. It is one
of the great reasons to fall asleep:
the prospect of meeting those beloved
ones again, even if it has to take place
in this faint, remote, and
unsensual timbre that these
encounters inevitably bear.

It is also the same inevitability, the
coercive terror of physics that painfully
kicks back in whenever I awake,
which tells me that I am alive and
they are not, that I will have to
carry on and they will rest
another day.

*) "And the crack in the tea cup opens /
A lane to the land of the dead.
" from W.H.
Auden:
"As I Walked Out One Evening", 1937

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