This slow life

The moment that holds time open for you: that gathers up your past and lets you face the future, lets your life take shape. Wouldn’t it be a kind of torment otherwise, the slow steady arc of your life? But you know what that’s like. Empty time. As if you’d lived the same life many times over and drained it of meaning. A ghostly life, as in Kafka’s story about Gracchus, the long-dead hunter whose barge was meant to take him to the beyond before it was blown off course, and who now floats aimlessly on the earth’s seas, unable to live or die.

A dull slow life, stretching time beyond all proportion. Flat horizon. Whatever you do, you’ll be just as bored as before. It reaches such a pitch that it seems like time itself is boring, life is nothing but boredom. It fills you so completely that now it’s only a small step to – what? You can almost see it, time itself, which you’ll only ever know as pure boredom… but you can almost see it, a time when boredom lifts like a fog, when it’s never existed, can’t exist, a time that knows nothing of boredom. You can almost see it: a kind of grace.

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