Robert (gurdonark) wrote,

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whispers across a universe of marble

"I've spent a lot of money and I've spent a lot of time
The trip we made to Hollywood is etched upon my mind
After all the things we've done and said you find another man
The things you think are useless I can't understand"

I love the part of the United States capitol building in which one can stand in one part of the building and speak, and through some magic of acoustic design, a quiet speaking voice can be heard (by some sort of deflection I don't understand) in another part of the building. Even if someone is speaking across the chamber in the most quiet voice, the listener positioned at the special spot can hear it as if it were a conversation an inch away.

Sometimes I think that all relationships involve a fair bit of these "marble whispers", these times in which people seem so close, but the distances--the marble if you will--are really greater than anyone understands. Only later does one realize that "so close" is yet "so far".

I read in my history book that the first words Alexander Graham Bell said through his new telephone invention were "Mr. Watson--come here. I want you". I think the communication of want, of need, becomes so much a part of the longing one is willing to share.

Here I wonder if need is not a barrier to true intimacy. Certainly "need" is not a bad thing--it's nice, on some level to need, and it's nice to be needed. But need carries with it that insistence, that demand, an almost acquisitive sort of possessiveness. I need attention; I need love; I need fulfillment.

I have respect for the various notions of non-attachment, and the idea that one should somehow break free of the simian demands of emotional intimacy. But I find myself among the less detached living, who interacts with people in search of connection, however tenuous that may be.

These contacts embed in my memory, like seeds germinated, growing unexpected plants. In my inward garden, the most curious things trigger a world of sights, scents and feelings. A chance moment--say, an e mail, or finding an old much-loved book, or something with sentimental attachment--and I am in a garden to which I'd misplaced the key, but never lost the scent.

But the voices I hear sometimes merely reflect off marble.
The voices spoke long ago, light years away. I hear them now in the same way I see a star dying---I never really knew the star, but it seemed a familiar part of the constellations I knew. But now it's exploded, and I only see the distant light.

Sometimes the smallest thing triggers the richest flood of memories

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