Extra-cultural reviews by synaesthetes, symbolists, and strangers.
In memoriam Sandy Hook
Is the world ever-young, or growing old in its traces? Both. To a child’s eye, everything is new, and from our perch on latter days we do well to affirm the truth of that perception, even when we can no longer see it directly. We walk with antiquities. The heavy elements of dead suns are the paths beneath our feet and the muscles articulating our every step, the oxygenated air that fuels our mind and the mind that ponders the question. Eternity is mapped onto transience, captured in the delicacy of a moist leaf’s veins. Only a mortal can detect the subtlest flavors of existence. Time is a blur to the gods, space an out-of-focus picture. They blink and we’ve long since gone by, but even under a god’s direct gaze we’re ghosts, interrogatives of warm air on a cold night – their loss.
Understanding this, can we become disciples of affirmation, of welcoming? To say “Yes” and mean it in the profoundest sense is to welcome even those aspects of life we all, in youth’s indestructible abstraction or maturity’s dismaying certainty, wish once or again were not so: life’s end, at far distant or fast-approaching remove, speaking to us in whispers not yet parsed. Yes to life must be Yes to all of life. We grow old as our time remaining grows young. As the circle of existence closes around us, the love we make – forged and shared and sent out in what we are and say and do, replenished in the giving – curves inward, drawing us together. The density of love, increasing, becomes solid, becomes a bond impermeable. Here, in this moment and nowhere else, here in the halls and gardens of presence, endurance flowers – endurance no immortal could ever know. Yes.