Some tiny creature, mad with wrath,

Is coming nearer on the path.

--Edward Gorey

Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S. Outlying Islands

Writer, lawyer, cyclist, rock climber, wanderer of dark residential streets, friend.

Friday, March 11, 2005

A Long Good-Bye

I've previously identified an achingly lovely series of Tony Pierce writings regarding his relationship with young "Shhh," but sadly, it would seem, it's come to an end. He writes:

sometimes everything is perfect and sometimes in that moment you see everything thats wrong. and sometimes the thing in there thats wrong is you.

It's sort of impossible to respond to this, though I'd like to (not the quote, but the situation). Tony brags at the top of his blog "nothing in here is true," and one other blogger I can't seem to find now noted, in effect, that if that's true, than the effortlessness with which this AKA-Tony cat does his thing is rather appalling.

I've never cared much for The Artist as such. I don't watch very many DVD special features. I can't stay awake for more than ten pages of any artist's (auto)biography, with one exception; it's the art that matters to me. This impoverishes my critical sensibility in academic terms, I suppose, but now you know why I didn't pursue the advanced degree in literature people expected me to pursue. If MJ goes down for abusing a kid, I'll still love "Thriller." If he's acquitted, I'll still find him repulsive as a man.

But a good artist makes me care for his reality, be it steeped in fact or wholly imagined. Tony's reality, I surmise, is mostly steeped in reality. I don't take this for granted, but it's my odds-on bet. In any event, the reality, his reality, he's created about and around his transient "Shhh" interlude has been compelling from minute one.

As in all good sentimental writing (and there most certainly is such a thing; in keeping with the theme, see this marvelous swan song), as it nears its conclusion, your belief wholly suspended, you identify -- not, necessarily with the characters, but with the words that carve their world out of imaginary space, and when something happens to violate, or cause upheaval to, that space, you feel for the space regardless of your sympathy, or lack thereof, for the principal players therein.

Today, Tony's space has been shaken. He writes:

i wrote in here about her and i held back from writing everything about her and i wrote in my dreams about her because it was two different universes crossing paths on a leather couch. hugely different universes that literally spoke foreign languages.

I won't spoil the surprise of the best line, the last line, wherein Tony once again demonstrates his profound magnanimity and ability to abide adversity. But trust me; it's there, and you should read it.

It seemed weird for me at first to respond so viscerally to some virtual stranger's situation. I mean, who takes the blogosphere seriously, right? Then it dawned on me that I have been reacting like this to good writing all of my life, and why shouldn't I find such writing online. Indeed, if I haven't, why on Earth do I spend so much time staring at a series of monitors virtually every day of my life? At busblog, with respect to "Shhh" if nothing else (and I doubt that), I found that writing.

My condolence, Tony. That's all there is to say. That, and: Thanks for sharing.


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