I read a headline that said, “Human hair behind pigeons’ lost toes, study finds.”
I thought it meant that pigeons were growing human hair . . . behind their toes, their lost toes?
I felt sick with fear.
I read a headline that said, “Just thinking about bright objects changes the size of your pupils.”
So how do we know that we’re actually experiencing anything?
How do we know that we’re not just thinking about objects, bright and distant? Concepts? The future?
What do we know of “the actual”?
If you think about greyhounds, your pulse rate goes down.
I am thinking about 16 Psyche, an asteroid so massive it exerts gravitational disturbances on other asteroids.
Some speculate it’s composed of gold and platinum, which would make it worth “quintillions” of dollars, billions of times all the money on Earth.
In these terms everything in the universe is money, a concept humans made up, like emotions.
In the future, objects in the universe will be so far apart that distant civilizations could never discover each other, even theoretically.
They could not even think about each other.
Sometimes, during a period of dread, I momentarily forget the thing I’m dreading, but continue to feel the dread.
Sometimes, I feel like I’m about to remember something, but the memory never arrives—just the all-consuming feeling of about to.
The feeling of pure, empty remembering.
If things are just themselves, what do we know of things?
The moon? Clouds? Herons?
Are they decorative objects?
Details on the surface of the actual?
What is a human skull worth—really, what is the cost?
I want to purchase a human skull.
I want to know what happens to desire when you’re dead.
You can have your ashes embedded in a record, so your survivors can listen to your death.
You can turn all the carbon in your body into artificial diamonds—you can want that.
My friend the undertaker wanted to be turned into a diamond, then embedded in his own skull, a decorative object.
An undertaker takes the body under, a coincidence of language. (It’s just a euphemism: an undertaking.)
What you wanted, once you’re dead, is actuality without a feeling.
Desires with no one to want them.