Monday, February 27, 2012

All Things Unknown

I went to find her. The voice in my head drove me to find her. I could do nothing except look for her and look for her, scouring place after place after place, until my body and mind was exhausted and I died.

Except. Except the voice in my head drove me to find her and I found her. I found her. I found her. I found her.

(Do you know what qualia means? It's a philosophical term. It refers to the subjective feelings we have. The pain of a headache, the taste of food, the perception of light. All of this is subjective. All experience it differently.)

I drove. I had no license (they take that away from you if you're in a mental institution), but I drove anyway. I was careful, I didn't speed, I didn't attract any attention. I followed the voice in my head that said find her find her find her.

(Can you distinguish between the colors of blue and green? Do you see the sky as blue? And what if you were to look through your friends eyes and see the sky? And you would notice that it was green? But you're friend would say it was blue - that all things green are blue, because that is what he perceives. Because all of reality is what we perceive it.)

I followed the voice in my head and the feeling in my stomach. The churning, the feeling of bile rising. I could find her with my revulsion. I drove down highways and through state lines and I kept going forward.

("Everything we see or seem is but a dream within a dream." Poe wrote that. What did he see? What was the world like for him? Dark and dreary and gothic? The world is what we make of it. But what if there was something that was beyond the perceptions that we know? Beyond all perceptions? We could only perceive them through our eyes, but they would exist in some state, somewhere, and they would be definite, they would be real, as opposed to the unreality of the world, the impressionist lines of our surroundings.)

I found myself driving into a town called Hope. It seemed a sign. And then there it was. The place where the voice urged me, the place where my revulsion forced me to stop. It was an amusement park, shuttered and closed, empty of all life. And the sign above it read: The Land of Make Believe.

(There are languages out there that do not have separate words for blue and green. There is no distinction. For some, there is no distinction between blue and black. Words. Words define the world around us, yet they are subject to our perceptions as well. "Schadenfreude" means pleasure derived from watching the misfortune of others. How could we ever perceive such a word? There are words that even we do not know the meaning of.)

I walked inside the abandoned amusement park and looked around. It felt wrong here, like I had stepped into a different world, a world that was wounded and bleeding and dying. The rides were rusted and nature seemed to be reclaiming some of them. It felt like something bad had happened here, something so immensely terrible that it affected the entire area, that the entire area was lost and dying.

(Do you know the word "sehnsucht"? It's a German word, like schadenfreude, but the meaning is difficult to understand. It's sometimes translated as "longing" or "yearning" or "craving," but it means none of those things. It's similar to the Portuguese word "saudade," which means an intense longing for someone or something that is missing. But sehnsucht is more than that. It means a longing for something that does not exist, that cannot be real, a longing for this unreality. C. S. Lewis described it as "that unnameable something, desire for which pierces us like a rapier at the smell of bonfire, the sound of wild ducks flying overhead, the title of The Well at the World's End, the opening lines of 'Kubla Khan', the morning cobwebs in late summer, or the noise of falling waves.")

I walked through that place and as I wandered, I found it shifting around me. It became something like a playground, but one in which no children would ever play in. I found myself walking towards a roundabout, those metal disks with poles that spin in circles. I could remember playing on one of them as a child and then falling off and throwing up.

She was sitting on the roundabout. As I approached, she jumped up and smiled at me. 

(How can we make a word which we cannot describe the real meaning? How can we feel something about a world that makes no sense? A world where the only thing that is real is what we perceive. And how could I have such a feeling? A sense of longing for something which is unreal, which cannot exist. How could I long for that unnameable something? I don't know, but I did.)

She smiled at me and before I knew it, I was down on my knees and she had wrapped her arms around me. And she leaned forward and whispered into my ear.

(Is it a dream?
Nay but the lack of it the dream,
And failing it life's lore and wealth a dream
And all the world a dream.)

I have no name. Perhaps I have never had a name. The name I thought I had was just a dream. The life I thought I had was just a thought. She has stripped away my dreams and my thoughts and my name, if I ever had one.

There is no way to describe it. This feeling of being nameless, of being no one.

I am nobody.

I am nameless.

I am Unknown.

Saturday, February 25, 2012


She's gone. I woke up and she was gone. I don't know why and I don't know how, but thank fucking god. My head feels better than it has in weeks. I just opened the door and took a deep breath of fresh air and

find her


find her

who are you

find her

what are you talking about

find her

no no get out get out of my head

find her find her find her
help her find her help her
find her

help me

the name that can be named is not the eternal name
the nameless is the beginning of heaven and earth

go to her

find her

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

nobody's watching

nobody's watching us, nobody's looking at us, nobody sees us

we stroll through the park and everybody looks away. they look away and don't see a thing. they can't see her face, her too large eyes, her too white teeth (sharp, they are so sharp).

keep calm. keep calm. you've survived this far.

think. keep your thoughts about you.

11/22/63. dealy plaza. keep your thoughts on what happened. keep your eye on the bullet.

who killed him? bubushka woman. umbrella man. the man who was made of shadows. on the grassy knoll. in the book depository.

keep your thoughts about you. always connect. only connect.

keep calm.

nobody's watching.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Still Here

I'm still here. Don't worry. I haven't completely lost it and killed myself. I just kind of panicked when my neighbor went crazy.

And then the girl, their "daughter," well, she showed up. At my doorstep.

I just sort of opened the door and she walked in. She just walked into my house, not saying a word.

I've spent the last few weeks...I don't know, caring for her? How did I do that? I can barely care for myself. But I did. I fed her. I think. At least, I remember making breakfast and setting the plate down in front of her, but I don't remember seeing her eat.

And then, today I woke up. I woke up and looked at her.

And I saw her. I truly saw her.

Her face was...not right. The proportions were all off. Her eyes were too big for her face. And she didn't seem to have any pupils. Her teeth were...too white. And I could see the tips of some of them, sharp like razors.

She wanted me to care for her. But now I can see her for what she really is. How can I continue...feeding her?

She's waiting in the dining room now. I told her I'd be right back. I don't know what to do.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

yimakh shemo

i can't remember his name. i can't remember. i watched as they carted his body away and i couldn't remember his name. the man who lived across the street, the husband who worked as a lawyer. he had a name. i knew it. now i don't.

she said he was trying to hurt her. hurt their daughter. that's why she stabbed him nine times. i heard her yelling at the police, telling them they couldn't take her away from her daughter. but when they asked what her daughter's name was, she couldn't tell them. she couldn't even remember her husband's name.

i can't remember. i wrote it down in a notebook, i remember that. i wrote it down, but now it's just a smudge. a smudge for a name. a name of nothing.

when my mother was out, my grandmother babysat me. she used to tell me that my father was "shmutz" and every time she said his name, she said "yimakh shemo." one day i asked her what it meant. "shmutz means dirt," she told me. "that's what your aba was." and the other, i asked her, what did the other thing mean.

"yimahk shemo," she said, "means 'may his name be obliterated.' harshest curse we have."

i can't remember his name. it's just a black smudge.

yimahk shemo. may his name be obliterated.

i have to go.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Q & A

So I left my house and walked over to the neighbor's. I knocked on the door. The wife opened it. She hasn't been going to work lately.

"Hello," I said. "I, uh, I live across the street from you. I just, I mean, yesterday I saw your daughter, I mean, I saw that your daughter was playing in the street." Not a complete lie. Unless their daughter is just a figment of my imagination.

"Oh," she said. "Yes, thank you. We should be more careful and keep a watchful eye on her." She looked nervous, but at least she had confirmed her daughter was real.

"Did you adopt her?" I asked point blank.

"Yes," the woman said. "Yes, that must have been it. We adopted her." It seemed like she was just now realizing it.

"So what's her name?" I asked.

This simple question seemed to cause a schism in the woman. Her scrunched her brow and squinted her eyes and said, "I'm sorry?"

"Her name?" I repeated.

"Oh," she said. "Sorry, I have a lot of my mind right now. She needs so many things, you know. Kids. I mean, we call her sweetie pie and pumpkin and our little angel-"

"But she does have a name, right?" I asked.

"Yes, of course," she said and then stopped. She turned, as if she was hearing some silent voice in her head. "I'm sorry, I have so much to do. Thank you for coming over, Mister?"

I gave her a fake name. She turned and went back inside, but before the door closed, I managed to catch a glimpse of the little girl again. I don't know how to describe her. Literally, I don't. I don't remember how she looked, nothing. I remember seeing her and then the door closed. But there's this...blank spot right before the door closing.

She's real, I know that. Now the question is: is it just my mind playing it's abnormal tricks on me or is there truly something wrong with this girl?

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Photographic Evidence

I indulged my paranoia: I took a picture of the little girl across the street. Click. Snap. And there it was. Photographic proof that she existed.

Except she didn't show up. The image was of an empty sidewalk. She was there, but she didn't show up. I looked again and she was still there. I snapped a dozen pictures of her. Each one the same: nothing.

Was she a figment of my imagination?

Should I ask them? Should I ask my neighbors if they actually have a daughter? Can I do that?

What if the answer is no?