With all the time in the world

It’s a painfully beautiful day. Sunlight shimmering on tremulous leaves, fluffy white clouds painted on a piercing blue canvas. The sky stabs me with its indifferent brilliance. In these tranquil moments I transcend my worries, my merely human concerns. And I wonder why it’s not enough to eat, sleep, fuck and die like everything else in nature.

Because there’s status and envy and desire and all the tormenting, soul twisting passions. Mortality, awareness like a wound that doesn’t heal. We’re born sick, sentenced to aimless freedom, every step haunted by the arbitrary. Why this and not that, why now and not before, why you and not someone else.

As a child I would lay awake and puzzle over my identity. I couldn’t understand what made me this particular person and not someone or something else. At an early age I sensed separation within myself. There was a part of me in nature, a natural being, a body with organs and functions, a history and a name, an object visible to other people. And then there was another part that wasn’t a part at all. It had no precise location but it seemed to come from somewhere inside my head. It watched the solid, material part of me and introduced uncertainty into every moment, into every act.

But I couldn’t see the source of my vision. I wasn’t outside myself in objectivity, in action and reaction, and neither was I at home inside, in thought, consciousness and contemplation. A body cursed with spirit and a spirit soiled with a body. I felt like a passage, a movement between reality and unreality. Not from here but with no destination either.

You don’t solve these mysteries. You stay alive and become insensitive, you forget. I can barely articulate the philosophical speculations of my childhood, when I was a precociously penetrating thinker. I know much more about the world but I can’t feel the intensity of those meditations anymore.

Nature is heavenly to behold but hellish to be a part of. I no longer feel the loss of who I was, instead I note it like a piece of history. The sun is setting on this tauntingly pretty day and I can’t find the words to describe those old questions that used to keep me awake in the middle of the night. I’m too tired to be an insomniac; I sleep so deeply I don’t remember my dreams. I’ve failed to say what I want to say yet again. My only consolation is knowing it doesn’t matter either way.

Author: The Empty Subject

Born curmudgeon

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