No, I don't know it.
Sing it for me, Hal.
My song for you.
She writes me love poems,
She sings me folk songs,
She hates my mother.
She drives her car fast,
She wears a red dress,
Hemmed kneecap stratosphere.
If I had practiced some kung-fu,
That guy'd be wearing numchuku,
And I'd be with her,
Lying in her nightlight light.
She makes entendres,
She speaks in sanscrit,
She does her yoga.
Make me jealous,
It's all on purpose.
She wants to hear my "until death"
While Fred Astaire takes one more breath,
And shows me dancing by the nightlight
On her wall.
I wish I had another way to waste my time.
But could you if you knew a girl with one tan line?
Who says someday soon you'll make her come for real,
Please try all night,
In that small light,
I'm scared to be how she must feel.
She talks on shortwave,
She launches rockets,
She dyes her hair red.
She bites my earlobes,
Shares her chewed gum,
She loved "Solaris."
I'm gonna rent a Ryder truck,
And drive to Sitka with my stuff,
Camp at her tree line tanning in
That little light.
We are an event-driven
society. We are not zen
. We are not now. We are all waiting for our chance. When the ship comes in. When the aliens
land. When she looks at me that way again. Again.
A little while ago I sat across a table from a friend explaining to her how the book Hofsteader book Godel, Escher, Bach: The Eternal Golden Braid proved to me that God must exist, mathematically. Godel's theorem to me - Every self-consistent system must contain elements which assure its cataclysmic end.
"This sentence is false," is something like it. In words.
"I don't know why I feel this way," is another.
And you can't divide anything by zero, not because you can't, but because if you do, math stops working. So we've gone into mathematical denial about it. Made it illegal.
The sound of one-hand clapping is simultaneously inside our world, and then not. You can say it, but if you think about it, it floats away like a feather you try to catch too fast.
Time belongs to us, but doesn't. We never have enough. It always takes too long.
There is a place in our universe where right now, you not only don't know what's happening, but your "now" does not exist there, and it never will.
It was sunny that day. We sat by the window. Outside people boarded boats, and some landed carrying coolers of soft-drinks and almost dead fish. Old men helped their grandchildren ashore. The city across the Sound seemed like a dream written and buried by a genius no one would ever read.
There was a malt waffle in front of me, half-eaten. She pushed grilled potatoes and eggs around a plate fired iridescent red.
This was one of those moments of real life you see in a movie and know never happens.
She said, "The Mind's Eye Godel, Escher, Bach. He makes me read them. Why does my father read books like that?"
I said, "I don't know why he does it. But I do it because sometimes I have ideas that feel like I'm not smart enough to have thought. So I try to figure out where they come from."
I told her that as if it was an idea that mattered. As if I could speak a future where we understood each other the way lovers do when they gasp at a feeling. As if anything I wasted time uttering mattered more than the sun and the boats and the clouds that would eventually come.
"How do you think it will end?"
"The world?" I said, pushing my coffee cup toward where I knew a waitress would have to be, eventually.
"Not the whole world," she said, and it was one of those times I knew what she meant by the way she used her fingers to smooth the wrinkles on the linen restaurant-issue napkin. When it gets a little too quiet, and the universe is an audience anticipating your famous last words.
"Then, like most things," I said, "With a whole shitload of crying."
When she looked at me I could see through her eyes back to the moment of her conception. And I realized that when you conceive a moment, the briefer you go, the shorter the time, the more of everything has to be squeezed into it to make it real. Eons are huge dilute things. Everything comes from supernovae.
"What are you thinking?" I said, when I managed another piece of malt waffle that was so close to art it had been framed in the ninth dimension.
She said, "Once, I read something you wrote, and all I could think was, 'I want to be loved like that.' Is that too much to ask?"
"No," I said. "But that's one."
The human mind is a system of ionic software and biological hardware that must include elements which assure its annihilation.
Love is that.