Sunday, November 14

Earlier this year, just back from Budapest, thoroughly unemployed and saturated with an aimless despair, I sat down with a fountain pen and a stack of copier paper to write a manifesto. I wrote "justify yourself" across the top of the paper, because it was the single phrase that kept running through my head. I wasn't sure what I meant by that, and I wanted to know; to find out and in the process of finding out give expression to all the things that have informed my sense of wonder, of responsibility, of longing and incompleteness, of connection and unexpected sufficiency. I still do. The human animal has an amazing faculty for ignorance. A faculty our entire civilization, possessed of so much knowledge, is hellbent on augmenting. No matter. This is not an excuse. (In a certain vocabulary the things of the World must be overcome: they are an obstacle and a hindrance, but they are no excuse. This is true, and also not, because the world is or at least contains - is contained by - what we seek.) I feel I have lost touch again with the real life, the life you should never look away from once you have found it. And yet it's everywhere. In every unexpected or deeply known thing.