Chariton

The first thing I remember is insects. Everywhere of course and hidden at first. Always half finished projects. A thing to be created, a plan in conception, and a pulling up of roots. An odd place. Crawling, uprooting, building. All process. I signed the papers but I don’t think it every really started – the beginning seemed already only memory. Certainly it was never finished; it was only left. I went back once but everything was gone. I doubt our inheritors appreciated our foibles, but they should be thankful. Thankful for our youthful predation. Thankful all the black widows are gone.

Before that there was another. Even less, really. More deconstruction than construction. There were no walls or doors or windows. There were only posts, and cables, and rubble. And there were insects. Insects attracted to dreams. Insects attracted to mouths. And what of it? From the ruins there was joy. Rarely have I seen so much of it. Ruin and joy bled out all around us. We were naive in the face of a world that was as beautiful as our will to re-signification. It too was left, not unscathed, into a past more bright.

After that there was another. Different this time – truly a home. Temporary for all travelers, but a home in permanence. A place where efficacy fostered and patios withheld. And there were insects still. Bees in the walls. They lived there, keeping mostly to themselves. Some took to shooting the bees but broke only windows. At least here no one set the walls aflame. At the end we saw horizons – not yet missing the safety of empty, well-defined repetition. I had desire but no object. I had two beds but only slept with work.

And now? Ants. They stream from computers and towels and all sorts of unliving things. They come from rain and frog song. They come, I think, to clean the world. At night scampering and creaks sound out a living stillness. Trees dance around the shadows and wood. The trees dance sweetly before the rain. What will remain of this place when I leave? It has been the longest lived and yet it remains unknown to me. I wait for its disclosure. I wait for the sweet rain of nostalgia.

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