I was enjoying a leisurely bath, reclining in the warm wet staring out at the oblivious green of the ash tree. This time last year a surprise storm froze out the gentle letting go of fall and rolled in a premature shock of winter. In one icy day everything fell, no yellow no gold, no falling one by one just one day untouched by autumn and the next all green was gone.
Fall. We all fervently hope it won’t do that again. We want time to relish the ache of goodbye, the leaving, the longing, the days of teetering on the edge of loss, but not falling. We are like lovers on the dock before the ship sails. We are full of impossible love, so enormous we regularly get lost in it.
How many people, right this moment, are falling, falling, falling?
I added more hot water. Then I thought of all the people experiencing the opposite: pain, suffering, disconnection, alienation. The lonely, the tragic.
And what of the wily? And the corrupt? The plots afoot, those fighting for justice, those fighting against it? This world wraps itself around everything equally, the whole rollicking, unsentimental mess, a kind of craziness.
We, all of us, involuntarily participating in what has to be the biggest story ever written. Each a full-blown character in it, swimming in the most powerful elements of intrigue, love, hate, fear, anger, every subplot so intense, so rollicking, so shamelessly unrestrained.
There are so many themes, huge themes, all here, all happening now behind those eyes, in that room, across the street, across the border, on our doorstep and way across to the other side of the world. So many arcs this story has, its sky lit up like the Fourth of July.
Who can resist such a story? No missing elements, no holds barred. If you just listen, if you just see, you will be blown away. And the story is so fierce and dynamic, so radical and ruthless that you couldn’t slam the book shut if you tried, couldn’t get up and walk out of the cinema.
It should be compulsive reading, we should be unable to tear ourselves away. We should be consumed. And, whether or not we know it, we are.
Any writer who has ever struggled to bring together the elements of a story, struggled to inspire a trajectory, tried to hold the reader in thrall can appreciate this. This is the epic story of stories, and we’re in it.
Do any of us have any idea what’s going to happen next?
We should be sitting on the edge of our seats...