Excerpts from a Lost Notebook

 A gaggle of angry Seneca’s is circling the gates of the city.  The lead Indian has a flute on which he is playing the theme from “The Love Boat”.  The city is famous for its exports: Technology, cotton underwear, and melancholy.    This will not have a happy ending.  The walls will come down, there will be bloodshed.      

            The city is already erecting a memorial.  It will be made of concrete, glass, and unread Russian novels.   It will climb to heaven.  God will smash it down.  Everyone will be very confused, they will scatter, they will think of another idea.


            In the spring of 1142 a man showed up in our town with a piece of the true cross, but by the time we all got around to observe it,  it was already 1200, and we had moved on to more important things.  Jerusalem was abandoned to the second Intifata.   We knew this because a series of flags were raised over the city.  God was pleased by our decision to slink back into Europe, and continue our slaughter there.   

In 1356 Madame Curie invented a vaccine for traveling to into the unknown, for opening up boarders.   The vaccine tasted like a circuit.

Before the invention of the radio people used to have to put their ears to the ground to listen to what the earth had to say.   The news was always the same.


In 1511 a bird flew over the city, the shadow of its wings convinced everyone that the Dark Ages had returned.   We consulted the texts that had been hidden way in the labyrinth for just such an occasion, only to find that all the books contained were various recipes and commentaries on Germanic cooking.

At the beginning of the Second World War I was in my room listening to Johnny Cash, when I heard that the Germans had crossed into Poland.   Then the house across the street disappeared in a cloud of dust.  No one seemed to notice as house after house evaporated.   Then came Hiroshima.  It was all over very quickly, I never even had a chance to get out of bed. I felt like a telephone that was ringing, that no one would answer.

            At some point the city disappears, or changes its name, no one is sure which; all that remains is a man who goes from place to place putting up fence, he is re-erecting the monument.   This time, he has been assured—by someone—it will be indestructible.


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