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And she’s wiped out from the transcription gig.

I had just glanced at some text on the screen and read this sentence. For a moment I had no idea what it meant. Who was this “she“? Was there some punctuation missing, like after the word “transcription“? But then what would a comma be doing there anyway, wouldn’t that make even less sense? My mind tried to wrap itself around the sentence and could not make anything of it.

That moment of total ignorance, when it follows a period of knowing (a period that can have lasted a lifetime or itself only a moment), can be quite shocking and distressing. Or it can feel as open and free as when you wake from a nap and don’t know whether it is morning or evening. You don’t know your name.

And creating that moment deliberately – like the old trick of throwing oneself at the ground and missing – I suppose this is the root of all mystical experiences and drug trips. To feel new, to be scrubbed clean of history, a nightmare from which I am trying to awake – but awake into what?

Thank god I don’t have to think of anything original; indeed, none of us do. The original is there, before us, every moment. All we need to do is be present for it. The dead language will rise again and glow. Some sort of leaf? We see it branching before us and we try to name it, and the thrawn grunts develop on the paper into refined yawps.

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