Saturday, November 13, 2010

Dr. Livingstone, I Presume

When you are in a story to the point where you are no longer aware of the way you came in and are now casting about for some kind of literary GPS for clues leading to any of the cardinal directions, you have arrived at an articulated dislocation most non-writers, non-musicians, or non-actors experience every day, although they fail to recognize the condition on any conscious level.

You do not intend to ignore the painter or sculptor or photographer or dancer from your list of Henry Morton Stanley, seeking--and finding-- the equivalent of David Livingstone in the depths of Africa as a metaphor for the discovery of a significant goal at the end of a discombobulating quest,nor for that matter do you intend slight to the quantum physicist who reaches to understand how it all began, the it being in practical terms us.  Even though your atheism is quirky with unlettered anomaly, you mean no slight either to those who leap across a chasm of reason and cultural morass with--for them--tangible consequences should their leap fall short.

The activities you know to a closer degree have revealed some of their secrets to you, or perhaps by dint of studying them, you have understood them to a greater extent than the others,  The ones you cherish are about timing, about portrayal of feeling over a span of elapsed time.  The absolute joy is being so engrossed in them that you for moments at a time seem to own them.  Of course you do not, not even your own stories, which are products of your own imagination.  The entire process is an interest-free loan from the universe, which is the bedrock cause of you being here in the first place.  The awareness that you are in deep, looking for an answer, a way out of the labyrinth, is exhilarating, you can almost feel the droplets of endorphin being squeezed from your psyche.  When you first were on to this discovery, you could neither describe it nor articulate even to yourself its source.  You cannot say with certainty that you know it for sure, but there is a greater sense that it is not merely for the personal pleasure it gives you, rather the feelings come from the desire to share the results.

Back in the days, the explorers would come back with their discoveries to present the proof of their journey to some royal society or other in England.  This was often a wealthy man's occupation, the rest having to work under unbelievable circumstances to make ends meet.  Today, the investigations are going on all about you; men and women of every age are setting forth to define the universe while in the process of having a dialogue with it.

One of your dearest hopes is that your journeys of discovery and investigation will never sound boring to anyone, least of all to you.