Sunday, September 23, 2007

Closure, by Quentin S. Crisp

One note fell upon another inside his mind, like music. This was the music of everything falling elegantly into place. It was the music of proof.

He stared at the paper and did not see horizontal lines of writing. Instead he saw geometrical pieces of a puzzle box linking together as evidence, and there, right there, in the centre of the page, was the point on which the swirling swastika hairlines met and clicked. The ramifications of this were… He looked up from the desk and the light of the flexible lamp. Unbelievable. The room, beyond the circle of light, seemed unreal. Everything was as light as this sheet of paper in his hand. To tear it up would be the difference between one kind of universe and another. All things had coalesced here, the ends of the human nervous system tapering wispily into the deepest mysteries of sub-atomic physics. He could see a tracery of lines before his eyes, bright and pulsing. They were the veins in his eyeballs, of course.

He let out a breath.

“I’ll be famous,” he managed to say, surprised to find his voice, apparently linked to his consciousness, still operating. “I’ll definitely be famous. I practically am, already. Proof… that we… we… do not exist.”

But the idea of fame was already redundant. This was something beyond fame.

“I have to tell someone. Tell them that… we…”

The word ‘we’ was strange to him. It appeared to him now like that web of veins in his eyes, like the nervous system merging with the world of sub-atomic particles and forces, merging and dissolving.

“I have to tell someone.”

It was the strangest thirst he had ever known. As he got up from his chair he had a peculiar sensation that he could not explain. At last… At last he would meet people as they had never met before… famous… beyond famous… meet them in reality… or dream…

He ran out into the corridor, flushed, and called out. No one answered his echoing voice.

Were those notes falling into place, or falling away, being peeled off one by one?

From somewhere there came a rumble like thunder. An ocean of white rolled in from all directions.