Things Left Mostly Unsaid (06)

§06 — As always, she’d been exhaustingly elliptical. It seemed as if she never approached a point unless to curve about it. Her extreme circuitousness drew out the interrogator in him, which felt too much like work.
“What are you trying to say?” he asked wearily.
“‘Trying’ suggests failing,” she replied, immediately, with a laugh.
“What are you saying, then?”
“That’s better, but now redundant.”

It was always like this. “You’ve said a lot less than you think,” he muttered. It was pointless. She hid by nature. Irritable words wouldn’t draw her out.
She appraised him with cold neutrality now, wondering whether this was a fight. “Confession is a myth,” she said. “It collapses the question of evidence into intention. Information isn’t being held back. It isn’t available.”
“Sometimes, maybe,” he quibbled. He wasn’t going to grant her more than that, or in fact even that. “More often it’s withheld.”
“Sure, but primordially.” It was a word designed to up-end what remained of casual conversation. She smiled a little sadistically after uttering it.
“You mean, not by you?”
“Of course not by me,” she said, perhaps too quickly. Immediately, the ‘of course’ had seemed crude to the point of self-parody. They were speeding into stupidity again. Maybe it was the only thing that ever happened. She sighed.
He appeared to understand her frustration. An element of apology crept in. “Don’t let me rush you,” he said. “There’s time.”
“Meaning what?”
“Patience, I guess.”
“So you’re retreating from everything now?”
“Is that what’s happening?” The question was transparently insincere. He could almost feel himself stumbling backwards.
Perhaps it didn’t matter. The can could be kicked down the road, as they said. There’d be another time.
The thought unfolded through exactly those words. ‘They could pick it up again later’ was the whole of the initial conception. Yet – even unannounced – ‘another time’ seemed like the strangest idea supportable by the world. Reciprocally, this time became unbearable. The peculiarity was crushing. He backed away from this too, as if cornered. To think in the direction indicated would be like endless falling.
“You okay?” she asked. He’d paled oddly, staggering slightly, as if intoxicated.
“I was going to say something really weird,” he said, with an awkward laugh, “by accident.”
“But you didn’t.”
“No, I didn’t.” It felt alright, although that didn’t say much, either. There was relief as at an abyss missed.
She laughed too, though less awkwardly, which was nice. Then she put a finger to her lips, making the ‘hush’ sign.
They listened to nothing for a while, but it was hard to hear.

February 6, 2020admin 7 Comments »

7 Responses to this entry

  • J Smith Says:

    “They were speeding into stupidity again. Maybe it was the only thing that ever happened.”

    I’d thought at first that one of them had gone and touched the whatever and been slurped into a toroidal time vortex, but now I think maybe they were already in it and never left.

    I had also thought these two people were just particularly unpleasant, but honestly, all talk could be reduced as follows: an endless loop of her prissy equivocations and finicky refinements, their deliberate elisions and gratuitous ungendered bitchiness, his theatrical wheedling and inarticulate grumpy noises. 😊


    John Hannon Reply:

    Speaking of “speeding into stupidity,” I’ve recently been having a good read of Wagner’s (remember him?) “Nietzsche News” blog. I must say his writing style has improved a lot since the days when him and the great Coleen Ryan were all over this place, but so far it looks like I’m the only person to attempt to communicate with him via his blog’s comment section.
    Whether you agree with his worldview or not, he’s an interesting character, and some of his blog posts are actually quite thought provoking.
    As for speeding in the accelerationist sense, this is quite a good recent YouTube presentation of the subject –


    FC Reply:

    Can you give the link to Wagner’s blog?


    Bilge_Pump Reply:

    Reads like a modern feminist version of Henry James.


    Posted on February 6th, 2020 at 9:04 pm Reply | Quote
  • Laika Says:

    Reminds me of the brilliance of Dunbar from Catch-22. He wisely realized the more boring and stupid a life he lived the longer his time lasted, thus he could live longer than anyone else in the unit.


    Posted on March 5th, 2020 at 2:31 am Reply | Quote
  • Samael Sutton Says:

    Please release this as a book. Or write a novel of this magnitude. This is amazing. The horror in this is amazing and almost no one is producing this level of work. Laird Barron has been doing it but I find this far better. The level of philosophy and horror I am getting here is unprecedented


    Posted on April 24th, 2020 at 11:28 am Reply | Quote
  • Jeremy Says:

    Mr. Land,

    If you could recommend 5 books for someone to get to your level of knowing, what would they be?

    Thank you!


    Posted on May 1st, 2020 at 12:40 pm Reply | Quote

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