time

what brings you to denmark

the first man I encounter says, what brings you to Denmark?

and I say, I don’t know.

trying to find myself.

he says, here you are.

then we talk some about four days… Berlin… visas… ninety days… Schengen…

he says, you’ll be fine. I hope you find what it is you seek, and then he stamps my passport.

why aren’t we riding bikes on an island

I said

Iʼm like a little mad at you for not being here 

I had a great day doing a very specific and very detailed not much of anything, and youʼre on a list of I think 2.5 people I would like here with me

MARY WHY AREN’T WE RIDING BIKES ON AN ISLAND

She said,

Hi.

I said, 

Remind me of how squeamish you are 

She said, 

Just nothing bugs

I said, 

Okay well today one thing I had to do was ride in a circle and go back a ways and inspect what was indeed a hedgehog smashed all over Rue Continière 

She said,

Tell me why you had to

I said, 

I guess because I was like, Is that a hedgehog?

And everything I am ever doing can wait

She said, 

This is an affliction of the bourgeoisie 

I said, 

Well what the fuck was I riding to?

My actual intention in setting out this morning was to find a starfish 

And so I had time to circle back for maybe-a-hedgehog.

And look at it from various angles

And take some pictures

And try to identify some of the organs on the road beside it

Does that even make geographic sense, that it might be here?

Where are hedgehogs?

If someone had asked me yesterday, I would have guessed Texas

Actually maybe I have an idea from somewhere that they are très français

And now I know!

Also today I plucked a billion sea snails from sea rocks with the idea that I would cook them for dinner

But then I got back and Sylka didn’t want me to

So now there is an olive container full of dead or dying sea snails in my backpack

I feel bad on many levels

She said, 

I wish that you didn’t feel bad at all

I said, 

Thanks

I guess I just don’t like killing things for no reason

I thought about walking right out of the door and messaging one of my stupid Oléronaise Tinder matches to be like, Can we make escargots de la mer at your place tonight? 

I have been carrying White Noise since Brooklyn, and Iʼm not sure if Iʼm not finishing it because I donʼt feel like reading it or I donʼt feel like reading at all or I do feel like reading, and badly, am Iʼm afraid of what will happen when I finish it

She said, 

Donʼt donʼt donʼt read it right now 

Rachel the world is falling apart 

I said,

But is it? 

I’m trying to imagine a future in which our capacity for happiness is less than it currently is

Are we standing in a bread line?

Am I dead of infection from a coat-hangering?

Lice?

It’s easy for me—with my sunburn and sack of discount bruised apricots and only a vague uneasiness at how the friendly fisherman affirm, to each other, “Juif” after I introduce myself—to be like, Everything is fiiiiine

But, like, everything is not fine

It’s terrible

It always will be, in various ways, and as things change, we will make changes, and we will go on

I don’t know what else to say

I am the engineer of a small-scale sea snail Holocaust

My knapsack is soaked in their seawater, which leaked from the olive box while, presumably, I biked home, but my journal is dry

Yesterday Sylka told me that her mother — 90 or 95 years old, I guess — had a dream about telling me, Rachel, remember me

I guess I will

Anyway, I promised I would

What else can we do? 

I’m not saying don’t care

But, like, run for office

OR find a way to keep enjoying the new and increasingly horrific world orders as much as you’re capable of enjoying anything

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