Friday, July 18, 2014
All day he'd watched swathes of rain lash the city. Hardly moving, except to piss, from his glass writing table (bought a tad wonderfully-used in Lower Main Road a block in front), he'd watched The Mountain magically disappear and reappear like a dove or rabbit into the all-encompassing pigeon-coloured velvet.
Now the sun shone, again; he knew it would be brief and he was glad for that. He thrived on this sun-banishing passionate moodiness; for him living on this exclamation mark protruded into the southern ocean, all that separated the teat of the continent from Antarctica, was a romantic and adventurous space during the winter. One that sparked and flared his roaring creativity, not to mention sexuality, even more intensely.
As his holiday petered out, but with no intention of breaking more brolly spines against the weather, he'd risen late, not without guilt, and had then read hunched beneath the duvet as the rain born on squalls from the north thrashed his perspiring, tearful bedroom window.
Only once his creaking bladder and desire for caffeine had uncomfortably met at the crossroads did he get up, slip more layers on, and with a french press thick with brooding dark and full-bodied Italian flavour did he sit at his table and begin his pages.
He spent the day, between bursts of dishes and sweeping and food, writing a letter to an intimate friend of 19 years:
'To my darling and invaluable friend
'Thanks for sending me your letters to your brother. I've just read them...
'I do love your writing; you are undoubtedly a writer and a marvelously talented one at that. And superbly intelligent.
'Also, as I have learnt over the last few days of our time together and from the pages of your letter, and quite to my surprise, you are of extremely low self esteem.
'At the same time I have also learnt that you NEED to write, to create ART.
'I read your letter to Seb and I'm surprised at my hatred for him. It's exactly when my hatred overwhelms me that I have to step back and objectivise myself again - probably my journalistic instinct kicking in?
'(I have previously often written my hatred out and then - immediately - pushed 'send'. But I have taught myself not to though: the last time I did so was in 1998; that was the time I fully understood for the first time the damage, the destruction, the hurt that my furious words are capable of.)
'In my own life I have learnt that the writing of these letters of passion should most definitely be written, but that they shouldn't necessarily be sent and then received by the intended recipient. The reason for that (and again I emphasise that these are lessons relevant to my life experience) is that these letters are undoubtedly about me, the writer, and not about the recipient. The letters are my therapy, my rage, and are written for the changing of me... because I am only responsible for me and my changing, my growth and development, for my EVOLUTION. Not for the changing of the other... .
'I realised that I had always believed that it was within my jurisdiction to impact and thus - rather arrogantly I suppose - change that person, the OTHER, into something that I am comfortable with, i.e. sanding down their rough edges, their prickles, for my comfortability. This, I discovered via my tsunamis of words, was essentially the ego, mine, in operation. My ego inflamed their ego, theirs in return inflamed mine further and the cycle continued into what would become another world war, which incidentally is probably exactly how the first two were started.
'I believe that our letters of this nature should be about our own healing and then growth, the freeing of ourselves via the healing of bitterness and hatred. And forgiveness...the forgiveness of the other for what I PERCEIVE to be their faults.'
He'd write, get up briefly, walk around the table at centre, or stand staring from the wall-window at The Mountain or the city, scratch his chin or rasp his beard before sitting down again on the comfortable chair. And continued writing.
By the time he'd finished with words, albeit against his will, and had to respond to his stomach's growls, The Mountain had again been obliterated and dusk was faded to black. The lights immediately below and on the lower slopes were sparkling in the inky dark.