May you never be perfect and complete
I love abandoned things. One of my favorite places is a wildlife preserve and reservoir. After moving away from the city to a rural area I got bored one day when I was 10 or so and wandered into this 10 mile square area with abandoned houses and beautiful man made lakes that feed the next row over its water. One such house is nothing but a foundation. https://www.reddit.com/r/AbandonedPorn/comments/hrv513/another_abandoned_house_foundation_sutton_ma_usa/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=ios_app&utm_name=iossmf
Though it’s been taken over by yuppies I still go there sometimes to think, run, clear my head.
Does this same idea go along with tableaus?
(Sorry for the edits. It type too fast.)
You gave me a review of my piece a while back, the one about the guys robbing burial mounds with CB radio antennas. The reason that subject matter is so personal to me is because I’ve hunted arrowheads all my life with my dad. In the artifact world we have met such people who have and know how to rob graves (to be clear we never do that horrible thing and only surface hunt).
On to my point... Every time my dad and I go hunt arrowheads we often come back with bags full of broken pieces or flakes of flint and chert. I have bucket fulls that I fill in my garden. Ancient deer antlers and animal bones from long forgotten camp sites. I pile all of it around my house, mixing it in garden beds and pots. I like to think that one day long in the future someone will come across it all with confusion and dismay, wondering if they discovered an ancient site. I live surrounding my house with these sacred objects that were touched by human hands tens of thousands of years ago.
The idea that books are abandoned relics, waiting to be revived, brings a whole new action plan to life for me. Like the magic of the thing must be worthwhile, it ups the expectation of writing something worth the chant and naked dance at moonlight.
Haha! And also, awww. Your altruistic ruins are both funny and sweet.
There used to be an insane asylum (as they were once called) on 1st avenue near where I lived. They had columns in the courtyard which were crooked and looked half buried. Seemed like a horrifying sight for those mentally ill. They were eventually removed and I think it's a homeless shelter now.
You build ruins better than anyone I know.
Our lives are all about building ruins that are worth discovering.
I do love a good cadaver. Maybe this is a longer conversation.
Wonderful essay, Chuck. Our discussion at workshop about the horse poop in my story reminded me of an interesting fact. In Japan, before it was a developed nation, human waste was a valuable commodity. As an island country, farms did not have access to large animal waste to use as fertilizer. So an entire industry existed to collect human waste and sell it to the farmers. Landlords could make a tidy profit selling the poop of their tenants. Maybe I'll use this in my novel somewhere...
Another Japanese cultural tidbit - one of the many yokai (spirits) is the tsukumogami (spirits of man made objects). There are stories of discarded sandals, umbrellas and stoves marching in protest man's callous treatment. So watch out for that toaster oven you threw out!
In the woods near my house growing up there were these two blue rusted 1950s Chevys. They had what appeared to be bullet holes all over them. As a kid I like to think some gangsters from Chicago drove all the way down to the middle of nowhere outside of Springfield, IL and executed some people.
Has anybody said it yet? No? Alright:
“Fuck Martha Stewart.”
The part where you talk about the problem being better than the solution -- I remember you once using the alien from the movie of the same name as an example. And it’s a great example. The alien getting blasted out of the airlock is absolutely no where near as impressive as the alien itself.
Like how living is synonymous to dying, decay might be my new favorite measurement of time. It reeks of metaphors. How far have we fallen off from a vision, how blurry have the details become. Entropy is what ultimately sends everything to their graves and the unavoidable destination of chaos and randomness begs us to find meaning in the briefness of order. A world has to fall apart to test a character. What he does in the face of the truth is revealing.
“On a long enough time line, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.”
This post was such a beautiful read. The ghost town metaphor is so poetic it's repulsive.
Granite and words. Writers seem to want to leave some sort of legacy through writing. Was examining this idea with a friend recently, and I believe that I value the writing because of connecting people. Everything I ever loved brings people together. Food, music, drugs, health. Totally ok with the world forgetting me a couple years after Im gone, but doing what I can to facilitate connections while Im here provides meaning.
Had the most wondrous, magical weekend. Ran into the monk that built a buddhist temple out here. The story Im working on predicates on a conversion, and Buddhism popped up from 6 different places as that day went on.
Had a visit with him and several of his friends or followers or whatever it is. I dont know ehat this relationship has to offer to the writing, but I know it has something to offer.
PS- A Buddhist temple in a sea of rednecks is a very strange thing. "It never got weird enough for me."