DEAR DIARY


06.11.2021

Note to self: rhyme "lungs tubercular" with "logic circular"

05.21.2021 (TRANSCRIBED)

- Oranges
- Orange Juice
- Figs
- Those fig Bars
- Dates (MEDJOOL dates! NOT Deglet Noor! MEDJOOL! Make sure they're MEDJOOL DATES)
- Minestrone soup
- Aluminum foil
- Cling wrap
- Frozen peas
- Pickled herring
- Sardines

Separate note to self: watch more Love Island

05.14.2021 I HAVE ALL MY TOES, AND THEN SOME!

Things have gone from worse to worse to worse. My internal monologue has been entirely replaced by an internal dialogue between Poirot and Hastings.

HASTINGS: Well, I suppose Mrs. Arnolds is as good as got. The evidence is irrefutable. To think! Mrs. Arnolds, a murderess!

POIROT: Is this so?

HASTINGS: She looks like such a prim and proper woman, but I suppose you never can tell. Perhaps you’re losing your touch, Poirot. Mrs. Arnolds seems the obvious killer when one knows the facts of the case. We should have seen from the start!

POIROT: Ah! But mon ami! You are most certain the evidence is, as you say, irréfutable?

HASTINGS: Why certainly! She was caught red handed, so to speak! It was a stroke of genius to search all of the umbrellas in the house, realizing that the pills could have fallen into an umbrella stand and landed in an open umbrella. The incriminating packet of pills was right there in the coat closet all along!

POIROT: Ah, but Hastings, it is not, you think, trop simple? The pills so carelessly hidden in a moment of panic? A killer so calculating and cold blooded to have planted false evidence for months if not years before the crime, she is the same one who loses or hides the murder weapon in a place where any reasonable Scotland Yard detective will find it? Or where it might be found the next time a guest borrows an umbrella? It is strange, no?

HASTINGS: Why, all killers make mistakes eventually. Mrs. Arnolds is a regular Lady Macbeth and the proverbial blood on her hands made them shake like an arthritic's. She lost her nerve when she realized what she had done!

POIROT: Non, non, non, mon ami. This is not the case, not at all. Your "obvious killer,” as you call her, is not our murderer.

HASTINGS: What do you mean? Are you saying that she was framed?

POIROT: Non. I am simply saying, my good Hastings, that she did not kill.
HASTINGS: But I don’t understand!

POIROT: At first, I did not either. All the clues seem to point, sans doute, to Mrs. Arnolds. The cyanide pills. The threatening letter. The argument overheard by her maid. The green shawl. She had a motive to kill, she had an opportunity to kill, and I saw in her eyes fear and remorse, which hinted that she had, in fact, killed. Yet certain discrepancies in the case have troubled me most deeply.

HASTINGS: Poirot! If there’s something I’m not seeing please enlighten me with all haste!

POIROT: Patience, mon ami, patience. We will reach the answer in due time. Let us begin by speaking of mathematics. You might have an equation with more than one solution, but, by imposing on it more and more constraints, perhaps you can create a set of conditions such that there is only one real solution — I am no master of mathematics, but this is so, yes?

HASTINGS (sputtering): B-but - why - yes - but I don’t see —

POIROT (interrupting): Of course you do not see, cher Hastings, which is why I am telling you. This murder was an equation for which at first I could find many imaginary solutions and three very real solutions. Thus, at risk of sounding like your beloved Sherlock Holmes, my main detective work was not to solve the crime — for, as I said, there were many solutions — but to find the constraints such that only one solution could be true. Oui?

HASTINGS: I don't understand!

POIROT: Let us begin by looking at the three possible solutions to the crime. We will then eliminate two until only one solution remains.

HASTINGS:
POIROT:
HASTINGS:
POIROT:
HASTINGS:
POIROT:


(I can feel my body rotting.)


04.04.2021 BUT HASTINGS! MON AMI! C'EST LA VERITÉ, MAIS CE N'EST PAS TOUTE LA VERITÉ!

Things have gone from worse to worse.

A dull throbbing in my right side is making me unhappily conscious of the fact that I have organs but am vaguely in the dark about who they are, and where they are, and what they’re supposed to be doing, and what they’re actually doing, and how they’re holding up.

I can feel my body rotting.

Things have gone from bad to worse.

My internal monologue has been replaced by an internal dialogue between Poirot and Hastings.

Poirot: Ah, but mon ami! You are failing to consider the most important fact of all.

Hastings: And what is that?

Poirot: Hastings! A fact most obvious! Simply this: It did not rain on Saturday.

12.03.2020 I SURRENDER TO ALL THAT I CANNOT CONTROL

The midday sun is shining. The world is warm, all humming with verdure. Everyone has moments: this is one of mine. The world is warm, all rippling with verdure. Everyone has stories: this is one of mine. //

We sat beside the fountain on the grass, in a rough approximation of a circle. E--- sat to my left. Her skirts were spread wide around her, so she seemed to hover centered within a broader sea of herself. Her pale hair glinted lamplike as she laughed at something D--- was saying. F--- was on my right talking - explaining - earnest - overbearing - about - what was is? The price of - ? The nature of - ? But of what? to me, perhaps? or to P---?

But I wasn't listening. The world was so warm. It was so lush. It filled me so full that I didn't have room for anything more specific than impression. We sat there in our circle. We reclined - photosynthesized - dissolved - until finally the bells rang the hour.

"It is time," said the bells. "It is time."

I smiled into the circle like the hand of a clock, like the shadow of a sundial.

"It is time," I said. "Let us begin." //

10.23.2020 (DAY 2, STORY 8, TAKE 4)

People are able to enter rooms so quickly and simply. It is comforting and discomfiting all at once, like knowing someone you like has seen you eat jello.

10.22.2020 JOSEPH BAZALGETTE (1819-1891)

Everything went wrong.

10.18.2020 (DAY 3.5)

Days flow together in continuous pursuit.

10.14.2020

I am on the edge of something.
Last night I sat naked in bed thinking about birds, and about ships, and about whether I'll be beautiful when I grow up.
Everything is dissolved.

10.08.2020

Once, a few years back, I got lost in the supermarket. I walked in to buy something specific (A sweet potato? A cabbage?) to make something specific (A soup? A stir-fry?), but never made it past the produce section.

The incident was without doubt my fault. "You have to set out early," they'd said, "or you risk not making it through the mountains before the snows start." "You have to set out early," they'd said. "Or you're setting yourself up for failure. You can't round the Cape during storm season." I hadn't listened. Hubris, doubtless.

And so I set off, mid-October. I got to the grocery store. The sliding doors slid open. I slid through the sliding doors and they slid closed behind me. I took a basket: I was buying something specific to make something specific, and did not need the optimistic capacity of a shopping cart.

I made it through the tomatoes ok, and through the apples and the parsley. I made it past the garlic just fine. I believe I made my first wrong turn near the squash. There were too many kinds of squash -- they all looked heavy, they all looked weighty and nonspecific. I thought about buying a butternut squash, but I did not buy a butternut squash.

By this time, I had drifted too far off my charted course. The squash aisle! The squash isle! The Isle of Squash! I hadn't brought my compass (hubris, doubtless) and I have never learned to navigate by the stars. This is one of my many shortcomings -- that is to say -- that I can't navigate by the stars, and never could.

The men from the ship found me days later, floating aimlessly near shoals of frozen halibut and deveined shrimp. How far I had drifted! How lucky that they found me! How lucky I was to be found! I was, to be sure, born under a lucky star. I have always said to myself: "you were born under a lucky star."

They hauled me aboard (nearly frozen stiff) and warmed me up with brandy and with a comfortable, stylish, and, the men insisted, surprisingly affordable Eileen Fisher pashmina.

Life is glorious! and very big, and sometimes far too cold.

08.?.2020 FEET

All feet are feet. Some feet (two (2) feet) are my feet. My feet are feet. My feet are feet, but they also happen to be my feet. My feet are my feet (specifically) but also (generally) they are just plain old feet.

07.25.2020+ A LONG TIME COMING

Perhaps it is unfair to say of him: "he is a man who has accomplished little."

Perhaps it is more generous to say of him: "he is a man who might have accomplished much, had circumstances been different."

Here, watch him as he leaves his office for a lunch break. He is wearing his coat open to reveal the suit and tie beneath; presenting himself as a Busy Professional makes his purchase of an underwhelming Pret a Manger sandwich seem a necessity rather than a tragedy. "I am a busy man," his tie tells onlookers,"and would skip lunch altogether would my body allow it. But, as I require fuel, a limp Pret sandwich will suffice."

He looks uncomfortable as he waits in line to make his purchase. One hand clutches the cold sandwich, the other a clammily perspiring bottle of sparkling water. He has a reusable water bottle waiting at his desk, but occasionally indulges in small single-use luxuries to justify the drudgery of salaried work.
— —
But things are different now. Lines are different. Sandwiches are different.
— —
I wandered for four months in the wilderness, looking for a welcoming spot in which I might pitch my tent more permanently. Eventually, I came upon a fair grove. I pitched my tent. I compiled an offering to the gods of that grove, that they might forgive me my trespass and grant me a peaceful night's sleep.

I no longer know where I am going. I am no longer going. I no longer go.

O gods! Look down upon me as I am - wretched - blind - lost - unknowing - and grant me guidance. Teach me how to go. I am only a wretched man who has accomplished little, who, had circumstances been different, might have struck my hammer again and again and forged a new star for the heavens.

02.23.2020 (DAY 3)

It seems self evident that truth is a thing immured, that by turning over enough earth and tearing down enough walls we are sure to find it entombed - dusty - shrouded - yet radiating such unsullied brilliance as to render its identity unmistakable. This is the dream. This is the quest -- uncovering, retrieving. This is the prophesy -- revelation. This is the dream -- impossible - yet - predestined.

To dig holes, to fish - these are noble actions. Surely it is noble to expend all efforts in pursuit of revelation.

Yesterday I went fishing. I caught a fine fish. I reeled it in and sliced it open, tip to tail, and in its belly I found a ring. All things are omens, but some more so than others.

Today, standing on the ship's deck, it all seems a dream. All seems a dream. The foaming spray coats everything in a fine layer of cotton, denying even the most solid objects their typical guise of solidity. We are on the brink of something. We are on the precipice. In front and behind and all around there is only salt spray; mist; primordial sludge; television static.

Everything is dissolved in everything.


02.07.2020 (THIS KUNG FOO MASTER IS ALSO A FIRE-BREATHING DRAGON)


Truth must be buried. Or, that is to say, truth is only truth if it has been buried -- revelation demands excavation. Cold hard facts left too long in the sunshine oxidize, taking on a patina of fiction. Truth too long exposed no longer looks like truth. Truth is a thing immured. Truth is a thing immured. Truth demands excavation. Truth is a thing immured.

You have got to dig holes. You have Got to dig holes. You got to go, and dig those holes.

"You got to go, and dig those holes."*




*Song:"Dig it" Album: "Holes" Artist: D-Tent Boys


2017 but also every day


On Monday he woke up.

On Tuesday he transferred the heavens
from a cereal packet to a bowl,
and added whole milk.

On Wednesday he reached a hand
into his coat pocket,
and found thirty-five cents.

On Thursday he thought about taking the train,
but did not take the train.

On Friday he lost most of his men
to a devastating blizzard
in the frozen food aisle.

On Saturday he inhaled.

On Sunday he ate a grape,
ate a grape, ate grape, ate a grape,
on Sunday he ate a grape,
and wondered whether people ever burst,
like grapes, and like balloons.