Sunday, February 11, 2007

Q & A

Q: Can you describe it?
A: Sure. The faint and far sound of a siren with the window open at night. It’s better when the air is humid. At first you don’t notice, then slowly you begin to wonder: Why the melancholy? Why sad? Then you wonder about purpose, almost religion.

Q: Purpose?
A: Yes. You remember although.

Q: The word?
A: No. The although living, a sentence that at the beginning promises something, like a conclusion, a dependent clause (the mark of contingency and dependence), but that keeps going without conscious purpose, words that exist only for themselves after alerting you there’s a point to be delivered, a corner to be turned, a whole sense to be achieved. But then it just keeps moving on like a theory. After a long spoor of letters and years, you forget the “although” ever existed, that it ever started the sentence, and you secretly live without hope for meaning. Acceptance. Surrender. We construct such a delicate culture and flimsy etiquette to make it all seem so real, to fill in the void, constructed appearance, so civilized, so connected, so grounded. Wine clubs, black ties, fan fiction. But come close to remembering the “although”—like when a calamity strikes or you hear a beacon in the humid distance, fate coming down, remembrance—the masters interrupt, reset the veil, in our head. They’re powerful—the comedians, the scriptwriters, the eunuchs of pointlessness. That’s why I sleep with the window open. Waiting for another chance. Let it last longer. I’m looking for it now.

Q: Now?
A: You knock on a door your whole life. Society loves the “knockers” because you’re profound enough to knock, the artist, the deep man. Then you realize you’ve been inside the whole time. You speak up, have a position. Then you’re dropped from the card, shunned, and an object of disinterest. Who loves the finders? How many people die lonely with bloody knuckles? But how many die with hands pristine?

Q: What’s the point?
A: Points are everywhere, even in far sounds, that’s the point. But we want “points” only when they’re safely away, something to yearn for, but never something in hand or heart. In love with method, love of the hunt, with no craving for the Real. There you go: the religion of modernity, a wintry, metallic take of the sacred.

4 Comments:

Anonymous irving said...

Wintry is right. Very existential. Fear of death and nothingness is just around the corner, brought too close by the siren's wail. Breathe in... Breathe out with an ahhhh. That's better. What's the point? What you make it. Why are you knocking on a door that is open?

Ya Haqq!

2/11/2007 10:01 PM  
Anonymous Maliha said...

Salamaat,
I don't know what I like more your post or Irving's response: "why are you knocking on a door that is open?"

Mashaallah, I think I have to re-read it again to let it sink in.

2/12/2007 8:28 AM  
Blogger fromclay said...

You're right, Maliha. Irving's comments are spot on. Apparently, he's not spending enough time watching TV; too busy thinking and stuff.

2/12/2007 10:15 AM  
Blogger Quill Chick said...

This is profound and precisely what i mean by writers who write well naturally. You have a gift and I pray that God grants you success. In fact, i know He already has. We have now only to be grateful. Thank God for all things.

2/18/2007 8:08 PM  

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