Arid time and things, they pass
Erase, not quite, deteriorate
Inexact as well, but depleting
Not exactly end, ending
Never a beginning
Ever picked up midstride
Only ever in the midst
Depleted, she said,
and yet what from?
From what is he so tired
What is ruin-ed?
What never was?
Always midstride, then
Nearer to the end
and nearer to the end,
Unable to keep up with 1/8 of the 9-year-old,
worrying the 10, the 17, the young man
fails the partner
fails the weather
failing his own mind
his own body
frozen in place
nearer to the end
Would like to write it out
Write it off
Pick up again
Declare a start
But he can’t
Nearing the end,
Never getting there,
(near completion, never that)
only begun and that just barely
nearer to the end
The one thing without fail.
The one absolute success.
The one almost-completion:
and nearer to the end –
very much like dancing
on bleeding broken legs
Ash grey little body only upright heart beating face to endlessness. Old love new love as in the blessed days unhappiness will reign again. Earth sand same grey as the air sky ruins body fine ash grey sand. Light refuge sheer white blank planes all gone from mind. Flatness endless little body only upright same grey all sides earth sky body ruins. Face to white calm touch close eye calm long last all gone from mind. One step more one alone all alone in the sand no hold he will make it.
– Samuel Beckett, Lessness –
Distractedly riffling through old notebooks stacked, shelved and scattered about my working space, some dating to 1991.
For most of my life I’ve desired to be a writer.
Nearly all of my life I’ve been writing.
Reading. Writing. Reading. Writing. Reading. Writing. Thinking.
Once out of the home, off on my own, out in the world,
the marginalia and doodles, notes in the headers and footers,
grew redundant with desire…
…desire for language to do some certain things,
…desire to be a certain sort of sayer, singer:
to write the ambiguities.
Repeatedly: to be a writer of “the grey,” “the foggy,” the layered and the liminal. Experience thickly translucent, ambivalent, inconclusive and unclear. That light in which even our shadows go unseen.
Yet over time, enduring work, assembling children, compiling experience, occasioning love and its passing by,
encountering mortality in its consistent accumulation of extraction,
my writing desire grows more active,
toward the active,
and its happening,
to write losing.
Losing in its agility and operation, its perpetuity.
Losing as it eventuates and proceeds, universally, in each instant.
TO WRITE LIVING : LOSING
to loose losing
…perhaps to lose it…
…face to endlessness…
will he make it?
– a novel? –
We untiringly construct the world in order that the hidden dissolution, the universal corruption that governs what ‘is’ should be forgotten [Death, or its refusal] in favor of a clear and defined coherence of notions and objects, relations and forms…
Thought and writing weave an apprenticeship…
…it will not hold, meaning and words, it will not hold.
-Dan Beachy-Quick & Matthew Ghoulish-
our limited mode of access to reality
The novel hurled to the ground breaks into verse and achieves a perfect synthesis
each page a fractured, beating thing
He woke far too early, and could not back to sleep. Even slumber. Broken into verse. Eyes needled with discomfort, asking for their closing, refusing to stay shut. And her. Her, the one pushing away, the one who woke him, the one asking him to ‘please move farther’ when there is no room. And so he enters a deep – after a fashion, or of a sort – a sleepy sleepless land, an engagement like great fiction.
Without synthesis and not unbroken, but scattered in its way, as insomnia might be, like stars, like sky, the bewilderment of travel. An apprenticeship in weaving. The dreaming in the waking. Age-old questions, rich and beautiful: unanswered. The meaning and the words continue refusing to hold. Something “like” that, unlikably.
our words are so light that they keep opening out into questions…
…when you affirm, you still question
Extravagant generosity of depletion.
Lust with which the world gives way.
I have entered a world
in which I am
and eaten away
It is “Today”
this world –
the realm, the sphere, the moment:
A time that’s never,
and a just-was.
What will be.
What I remember
The first day
It is like this –
each time –
it is the present:
that letting go.
and its goodbye.
Although nearly silent, or, too busy to conjure and compose, or…
I have not given up, having not ceased,
somewhere in the mix of these,
somewhere between voices…