Wednesday, June 09, 2010

breathing in

i don't think one should ever finish a book they enjoy in any place other than their favorite. take it for granted that one's favorite place can change whenever one discovers a more superior destination deserving of one's personal devotion. the course of the book can be enjoyed anywhere one pleases, whether consummating a quiet night at home, providing an entertaining distraction while in transit, or infusing an academic pursuit with relative knowledge, but the that book should not end where it is not appreciated, bathed in a light of complete love and openness of heart. to finish a book where you can't appreciate is to do that book an injustice.

the hypocrite of circumstance i am, at least for today, finished the sun also rises, a book i had to quickly mature well beyond my years to appreciate, while barreling down the west side this morning, and even though the ending can be filed under 'bittersweet,' assigning to it a cliche that makes it more memorable, i suppose, all i remember is the word 'pretty' and i'm none too pleased about that. call it lack of willpower. call it overwhelmingly compelling. what makes me happier than happy, though, is the tsunami that surged through that subway car at the very moment of conclusion. regardless of my ephemeral state, i still felt hit by the immense weight of every word that formed the final quote as it happened, sealing the book as the most intense of memories, a vicarious experience full of places and textures and smells and wetness i never lived. but it wasn't the cresting tsunami that hits the island and clears a path of destruction, it was the infantile tsunami, the one that slightly lifts the tiny boats that ironically bob on the surface of the ocean many miles out, as it passes underneath them, imperceptible but carrying the same mighty weight that will both change and end lives a matter of minutes after the tiny swell nobody even notices. i was the tsunami, the other passengers were the boats. i didn't let out a sound or even twitch in reaction, but exuded an electricity, and everybody in that car exited an ion at the next stop.

and that is me, for today.

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