February 14, 2004

Enormously full week; feeling overwhelmed and more than a little behind.

We watched an orange moon rise out of the sea one evening, five days past full, a ship on fire behind the streaming clouds, sailing for Valhalla. We sat on the beach, watching the path of light between us and the moon waver and ripple on the restless ocean. At first, the way was marked only by flashes of darkened gold on the black water, but gradually it became a highway dappled with shadows, wide enough for a tin man, a scarecrow, and a lion to walk with me. Reality kept me on the beach, pinning me down with the details of my to-do list, smothering my desire to walk to the moon with long words about water density and inaccessibility. Still, I want to travel that gently rippling road, all silver light and the heady scent of jasmine. I want to hear "the mermaids singing, each to each," a counterpoint to the crystal soprano of the stars.

In other, more mundane matters, I've recently read Deprivers. Something has shifted in the electrochemical composition of some humans, rendering them unable to touch another person for fear of depriving that person of sight, sound, speech, balance, direction, consciousness. Interesting premise, with fairly obvious social commentary. However, at 350 pages the book feels incomplete; it is the story of the beginning and end of the Depriver phenomenon but skips the middle. I might have found it a stronger book if it had followed a smaller cast of characters more closely through the entire experience.

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