The hand that grips the pencil is hardly mine; I can admire it, not lay claim to it, for it acts in such rigid understanding of its purpose – strokes appear on a sheet of notebook paper and the notebook I had purchased wasn’t meant for its current use, was an oversight on my part, I only needed four. And it was black. I thought, a stark use, an important one, because the color black and my imagination are complimentary, but in the end I kept it open for so long that I forgot its hue and turned my attention to the wastefulness of a pile of unused paper lined at that – so tailored to their specific purpose that the sight of them nearly made me feel ashamed of myself. It is the same with books, these days. Words, cleverly developed – ruthlessly ordered – impatiently scrawled in a flurry of vitality and in the presence of a thousand whispering voices of affirmation and terror – there are some of those ‘words’ on the notebook page now but they are not of the same make and model. Do they receive the same treatment? I can hardly tell, for some were written in service of the others, but in such a way that they simplified and mystified and stupefied the first. And anyway it’s all a matter of shame to begin with, for now the book lies closed and I cannot remember its hue. It cannot touch me. And I cannot seem to touch my working hand.


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