They kept the empty high chair in its place at the table long past the time it was needed. It was astonishing that an inanimate object could retain a faint half-life of the love that had centered on it so many years before.
Everyone is alone in the new America.
His quest to reduce expression to its essence eventually reduced it to nothing.
First he went into an elder care facility, then she. Their daughter visited a few days a week, often crying on the drive home. And then one day they were simply gone. They were found three months later, wandering the streets of Paris, holding hands without knowing who or where they were.
That, it would seem, would be love.
Except as a referendum on current trends, he barely existed.
A grid system was developed in order to rationalize intuitive choices.
Dinner with an old friend and his younger wife. She is lovely and shy, and in compensation you are more outgoing than usual. As you launch into another story about your friend as you knew him in college, a look passes between them and he squeezes her hand. You realize that her reticence is actually boredom and that dinner is, for them, an obligation to be endured as quickly and painlessly as possible.
When you have gone through all the layers of the self, its inmost nature, its essence, is nothing. You are nothing.
K., Public Talk 5, Madras (Chennai), 7 January 1978
He stood at the back window he had photographed a thousand times, without having really been there at all. Somehow, his fear had evaporated, and despite the knowledge that it might return at any time, he wept in gratitude.
Photography, simultaneously the most self-effacing and self-aggrandizing medium.
His last words were, does fish sauce go in the refrigerator, but she didn’t hear them. She was in the shower.
What doesn’t kill you makes you older.