I don't quite know what to do with myself on weekends without the boy. I should have more adult adventures, but I don't feel like having them. They rely on adult effort. I wish only to sit, to do little, to enjoy the pace of an unhurried life, to guiltlessly anticipate an afternoon nap.
I also wish other things. There is a hidden desire to pay somebody to throw away the articles of my life. To come home from an early brunch and find emptiness without effort. No bill waiting for the service rendered, no mention of it. An act as mysterious as insomnia. Change and tangible choice, elusive as the drug of persona. A secret that unfolds as surprise.
All that would remain would be my bed and one week's worth of comfortable clothes. Those would be folded neatly into a new piece of luggage, an unnecessary point of departure, one also unrequired. All the books that I've read: gone. A stack of unread copies near the corner, waiting, a tower of paper possibilities, of fuel.
Our lives are flammable, yet so few ever go in flame. We age to learn to mistrust the spark.
James Salter died yesterday. 90. He was, for me, the greatest living American writer, the one whom I most wished to echo in style, to steal from. Though, that would require much adult effort.
Good artists borrow and great artists may steal, though it still requires an artist to steal artfully. Time is how art happens, and artists occur in no other way. So, to time that we give ourselves, fluctuating, here and there, ceaselessly between perch and flight.