?

Log in

[icon] Johnathan Lethem - "Motherless Brooklyn" - Accreted Quotations
View:Recent Entries.
View:Archive.
View:Friends.
View:Profile.

Tags:
Security:
Subject:Johnathan Lethem - "Motherless Brooklyn"
Time:09:32 am
There are days when I get up in the morning and stagger into the bathroom and begin running water and then I look up and I don't even recognize my own toothbrush in the mirror. I mean, the object looks strange, oddly particular in its design, strange tapered handle and slotted, miter-cut bristles, and I wonder if I've ever looked at it closely before or whether someone snuck in overnight and substituted this new toothbrush for my old one. I have this relationship to objects in general - they will sometimes become uncontrollably new and vivid to me, and I don't know whether this is a symptom of Tourette's or not. I've never seen it described in the literature. Here's the strangeness of having a Tourette's brain, then: no control in my personal experiment of self. What might be only strangeness must always be auditioned for relegation to the domain of symptom, just as symptoms always push into other domains, demanding the chance to audition for their moment of acuity or relevance, their brief shot - coulda been a contender! - at centrality.


What about vengeance?

I gave it five or ten minutes of my time once. That's a lot, a lifetime, when it comes to vengeance. I had wanted to think vengeance wasn't me, wasn't Tourettic or Essroggian at all. Like the subway, say.

Then I took the V train. I did it with a cell phone and a number in Jersey, I did it standing by a lighthouse in Maine. I did it with a handful of names and other words, strung together into something more effective than a tic. That was me, Lionel, hurtling through those subterranean tunnels, visiting the labyrinth that runs under the world, which everyone pretends is not there.

You can go back to pretending if you like. I know I will, though the Minna brothers are a part of me, deep in my grain, deeper than mere behavior, deeper even than regret, Frank because he gave me my life and Gerard because, though I hardly knew him, I took his away.

I'll pretend I never rode that train, but I did.


-- Johnathan Lethem, "Motherless Brooklyn"
comments: Leave a comment Previous Entry Share Next Entry

[icon] Johnathan Lethem - "Motherless Brooklyn" - Accreted Quotations
View:Recent Entries.
View:Archive.
View:Friends.
View:Profile.