Monthly Archives: May 2011

Bad seed

The closest we can get to a beginning is a kind of disaster. Is that too strong a word? A break. A black hole in your memory, and in mine. Do you remember the moment I was born? A series of moments, of footsteps. There was a concrete path in a courtyard full of thick green thistle. You said goodbye to your father and were left alone and all at once time slowed down, you started walking beside yourself and I was born. All at once your life changed, didn’t it? Became strange. On your way to an anonymous room, your assigned room on a hall full of strangers speaking a strange language.

You’d been a bad seed, hadn’t you? Wasn’t that why you were sent to boarding school on another continent? Was I your punishment? It seems that way, doesn’t it? Or perhaps you were my punishment, have you considered that?

There are states of mind in which time slows down as in a dream, just as survivors of car crashes report that seconds seemed to take ages. Though this was hardly a trauma.

In those moments began a year of cryptic silence. Your future was being laid out, something was already happening without your knowing it. Or did you know?

There remains an obscure part of you, something working through you that even I don’t understand. Forming or deforming you to some obscure end. Sometimes you think of it as a devil, sometimes an angel.

How often you’ve tried to imagine what your life would have become if those moments hadn’t happened, if you hadn’t suddenly dropped out of your own life, if I hadn’t appeared, hovering above you, within you. Something leaked out behind you as you walked back to your anonymous room. Perhaps these words themselves were born in those moments, only now to be written. I was born, your friend and enemy, and everything took on a double meaning.

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Bored of boredom

I was beginning to realise that I had lost control – what little of it I had had in the first place, that is. No – that I had never had control. Boredom had left me behind, I had succumbed to its weight, its unheard-of centre within me. I had embraced it and it had completely consumed me and now I was bored of it. I was bored of boredom. There was nothing I could really do about this. I was like everyone else: I needed something to fill the gap, the time that dragged us, and it, along with it, to return me to the ground beneath my feet and hide away from our gaping hole like everyone else.

— Lee Rourke, The Canal