Thursday, October 22, 2015

October 21, 2015

Alexander and Zarathustra in Humanities. The one question I got after introducing the fascinating topic of the conquests of Alexander was “Is this going to be on the test?” Later in the day I saw a man in a t-shirt which read, “Everything I say will be on the test.” Came home to find that the ladyslipper roots had arrived. It’s probably mad to try them, but I laid them in the shady ground covered with compost and mulch, and so one hopes for the best.

Upheaval of an old memory: I’m in 5th grade, I think, because we’re still a Goodview Avenue, and I’m planning my trick-or-treating with my friends, and my father says, “There will be no more of that. You are going to work on Halloween night.”
    “Because I said so.”
So on Halloween, while the ghosts and princesses range up and down the Avenue, he has me cleaning out the side garden. Whatever lesson he was meaning to teach was lost, for I couldn’t think of any trespass that had warranted that (nor did he mention one). Was there some time when the things of childhood must be put away? If so, none of my friends were affected by it. I was miserable, thinking that something magical was being torn away before its time. He had strange eruptions of arbitrary cruelty, which he must have thought of as proving some point or asserting his authority in some way, though their actual fruit was simple-- and apparently long-lasting-- hatred. Could he have articulated his intentions if I had found the right way to ask?  I think Blake’s Nurse of Experience shows the way here, an internal bitterness seeping out to embitter the world.

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