Of Mirages and Monkeys

There are a lot of things that can distract a monkey on a branch, and not a lot that can keep him interested. While reading and writing a cascade of thoughts, images, and scrambled nonsense tingle for  attention – not because the topic is boring (Teddy by J.D Salinger is everything but that) – but because the mind finds solace in pandering to silly meditations.

Last night, there were two triggers that set the imp loose in that vast dimension. . .

Trigger: cigarette: Oh, what a great time for a smoke – that smell of fuming ash and paper in a breezy, odorless room; the warmish filter between fingers and a tight draw can just be perfect this moment. . .

Trigger: swimming pool: Remember the slap of waves in the beach? Wouldn’t it be great with a girl in our arms (a boy and his subcon) and a sunset that never really happened? Oh, wait, we can render a sunset – there, there – and in the shivering chill of the evening while walking out from the sea, turn back around to see an orange, no scarlet and purple with – who is this on the left – that girl? or the other one? or a celebrity? or a crush? or leave it all and stand here alone, la exquise douleur, and enjoy this moment. . .

And what moment? The monkey doesn’t care because the monkey forgot.

It’ll be a while until he and his homunculus get back to the bloody thing that set off this mirage of reflections. And it is a wonderful feeling: to lose yourself in a sea of visuals – seeing golden eagles swooping from electricity poles down to fetch rats in my garden, when all that article in National Geographic could do was to fade and flatten without warning.

But it paces time. As it is, there is very little to ration to all the fantasies and adventures in our lives, and when imagination starts invading into the sacred space of Responsibilities, and Priorities, it’s best to toss a coin and gamble on the ephemeral cigarette or the fictitious swimming pool. Half the time, one can continue with their business and be productive without am eagle on their shoulders.

For those of us who are too lazy to toss that coin: scribblers, screen fillers, colour splashers, and theoretical physicists and all those below sixteen and above sixty, these tugs from the page is an acceptable diversion. Brick by brick, someone is laying the foundation for some castle in the air that you are building in your line of work. We should cherish it. Subtle pleasures of one’s imagination can provoke enduring, dramatic motivations. All that time spent twiddling an imaginary cigarette could one day make it to page. The greatest epics were once fantasies, perhaps only a sentence or image of a lustful guy with ten heads riding a chariot across the open sea, under a scarlet-purple sky, with a chick on one side and a golden eagle on the other, all the while smoking a hookah. . .

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