Monday, June 09, 2008

I have a skipping record sort of feeling lately, like I have been listening to the same guitar solo so long that the vinyl is about to wear through. I think that the noise on the other side is going to be something quite different from the noise I signed up for when I put this album on.

Walking home tonight the winds kept punching me in the chest and stealing my breath, and something turned at the base of my skull. I wanted badly to just go home, tired out from too many late nights and a rich, delicious dinner, but I couldn't. Not straight away. Something vital had gone when my lungs were emptied, so I turned instead and walked down to the water.

Standing at the cold and empty waterfront I thought about Lake Vostok, a lake in Antarctica that has been covered with three kilometers of ice for at least 500,000 years and supersaturated with oxygen, but which probably still manages to support a whole ecosystem of microbes. To support life, or what's closest to it. Lake Vostok is more similar to Jupiter's moon Europa than it is to the rest of earth, and we can't even really get to it because the pressure of all of those years would come leaping out of whatever holes we drilled, knocking over scientists and tainting what was once ancient and pure. So it stays there, under all of that ice, part of a whole network of subterranean rivers and lakes. A whole universe that we can't get to, even though we can stand on top of it. A whole universe still unspoiled.

Sometimes, I need to remember to just breathe.

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