Many people like to look at the timely world in a forward fashion, with their gaze pressed upon the horizon of new experience, their eyes unfolding new sensation, enveloping new consciousness, and they watch it bloom and expand into carpets of rolling memory. But I’m not sure how much I like this configuration of time and our relation to it.
I like to think that, rather than looking forward into the unknown with the past floating in a dry haze behind us, we are actually facing the past, with our back pressed against a dimly lit future.
I like to think that we walk backwards through life, and this is a more accurate way of representing it, is it not? We cannot see what lies before us until it is already there, under our feet. Our gaze extends, not towards the future, but forever into the past. That is where eternity lies, after all, in our minds, the historical annals of our sensual experience, the tombs of fabricated memory, of associated feeling and dissociated thought. We take steps, feeble, trembling steps, into the unknown, feeling precariously, toeing every pebble and crevasse underfoot, bumping along here and there into the unfamiliar. Every parchment of new sensation is written over top great works in progress. We become contradicting stories, never ending narratives.
Our past is our best indication of the future. If we took no time exploring our past we’d be ill equipped to face the future. You just can’t run into darkness with aimless abandon without fail. You need to keep your sight on the light so you don’t lose yourself. The past is the only reservoir of light that can be of any aid, the lighthouse of life. But we often forget that. We often believe we’re on a new frontier, that our technology has somehow allowed us to transcend our basic impulses, our primal urges, our barbaric desires, our calamitous caprice, our vague vagaries, our sybaritic sensations that wind through our bodies and seep through our pores, into our gestures, and electrify the swinging swoon of destructive fiery passion, and pour through our mouth and into the ears of each successive embryonic mind.
Seething and breathing
Chomping and stomping
Crematorium and sanatorium
Places for the faces
Dread for the dead
We live in the past. We must learn to recreate the past, to fashion it according to our imagination. Use the past as fodder for thought. The fantastical lives with the past, not in the future.