Saturday, 15 April 2017

Moments of Madness in Mill Lane.

I was walking along Mill Lane today when I saw a man operating a tractor with his young son of around 10 sitting on the foot board. I smiled at them both and the man lifted a thumb in return.

It occurred to me that the little boy will be old one day, and his dad will be dead, and the now-old man will talk fondly of the days when I used to ride on my dad’s tractor when he was working the field. For such moments are the stuff of which life is composed (even though moments don’t actually exist because time never stops flowing, but we do so need to describe the fabric of our life in words even though we don’t have the words to do so accurately.)

But for now the little boy’s life will flow on like the movement of the tractor, gathering an ever-growing store of memories in its wake until one day a real moment will happen and he will die. No more life; no more moments; no more fabric. All done. All gone.

And then I saw two women and a dog and offered a greeting which was returned. They were close relatives of the Lady B whose literary presence has been greatly absent from this blog of late, as her actual presence has been completely from my life. More moments; more fabric; more life. All gone. (I miss her quite a lot sometimes.)

And then I saw a crow and offered another greeting, and thought:

Today I spoke unto a crow
A-sitting on a tree
The crow looked back and said ‘Hello
Are you addressing me?’

And then it was gone. No more words; no extended ditty; all gone.

I was tempted to wonder why everybody is not going mad under the pressure of existential angst. I suppose religion offers a remedy for some, and I have little doubt that the hum of Mother Culture provides a most efficacious panacea for the rest (bar the few rare people I get on with.) Or maybe everybody really is mad but don’t realise it because the common condition cannot, by definition, be described as madness.

And then I dug the three remaining vegetable plots in my garden. Digging the earth really does lift the pressure of existential angst, albeit temporarily, especially when you’re being as careful as possible not to injure any earthworms.

Ah well, maybe the greatly esteemed Mistress M from Upstate New York is right when she suggests I might be mentally ill. Yes indeed, but I doubt it really matters.

And today I was planning to make two highly important posts: one on the dangers inherent in the combined juvenility of Donald Trump and the North Korean government, and the other on the increasing incidence of mental illness in children. Suddenly they didn’t seem to matter very much either. Just more fragments of fabric in the endless flow of non-existent moments, soon to be gone.

This blog is growing ever stranger. That, at least, is encouraging.

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