There has been a lifetime without understanding. A simple word. As though words were simple. As though a mere string of letters could ever begin to describe the shifting of something so subtle. Uttered, spoken, shouted with disgust, thought of with envy. A word. The simple word. The complex word. The question remains, what is it? The study has given me more questions. The statements, the answers, the thoughts, the ideas…they have all fallen, one by one. 2,4 ,6, 12, 16…the understanding has fallen, there never was an understanding, just the knee-jerk recollection of the letters.
How many more words are there? How many more ideas…how many more things that are stored up with no real study, with no real questioning? There is a lifetime of rusty accumulation. A lifetime of words, a lifetime of supposed understanding and usage. I ride the wheel and I am left holding an empty bag. The wind blows and I hear an echo. I truly don’t know. I have never known. Each thought is an elusive grasp into the fog of truth.
For what is truth? What is understanding? What is power? Traces run along the ground, I run my fingers along their trail. But where do they come from and where do they go? I look forwards, backwards, I call to my friend… “where are you?” there is no answer, just another gust of wind.
I have been listening to the sound of wind, the sound of dust hitting a window over and over. I have listened to its bell for three decades. I have called to it, played with it, danced with it…I have never known it. I have never looked beneath that skirt, never studied the shape of the long first letter, the curve of the last. And I haven’t looked in. I haven’t felt the muddled ball that whirls in a fog of letters and symbols and blue and black. I think I see traces, I think I can poke it…and maybe, maybe…but I look into the distance with squinted eyes. I look out and know that the earth is covered in fog and letters dance in the wind and my fingers are covered in slime and my mind is coated in an even thicker sludge.
First, I will need to scrape the green ooze off. First, I will need to sit with the stillness, the evaporated shapes, the missing thoughts. This is not ignorance, this is the understanding that I have never held between my fingers.