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Letter from yesterday to some people

Thursday 5/4/23

You're going to see some major works in full soon. This is from one of them called "Finder of Views." Imagine an industry--you don't have to imagine, because you know--where someone creates something at this level--every day--and none of the people--not some; but none--in that industry will let the world see it. The story presently is at 7600 words.


Often he was on the verge of reaching out to a website to see if they’d put him in touch with a man who was his daughter’s partner in a lot of her movies, which was another word he hated. Partner. The term seemed like one that should only have anything to do with business concerns. Then again, maybe that was the point. He wanted to know what she’d been like near the end that Mason and his wife hadn’t known was the end, or was close to the end. Mason had expected her to rally. She always had. Or it may have been, he reasoned, that he couldn’t face the prospect of what did end up happening. If she spoke of them. If she had some moments of happiness, at least. Or was she just using and dying a little more each day, until the process was complete? And working. Making her movies. “Were you close?” he thought of asking this man with the massive appendage, a man responsible for so much splurging, the foremost rival of one who is the lone finder of views. This ostensible enemy. The vanquisher of purer visions. Confederate in the disassembling of innocence. “The two of you?” Mason would continue, trying to be as clear and least gynecological as possible, hoping that he of the massively demonstrated manliness would understand Mason to mean that he wasn’t talking about the proximity and inside-ness of bodies, but something more, something real, something human. A different, shared interiority. And maybe something unlike what Mason used to think he had with this person the two of them had in common. He hoped the answer was yes so much so that he couldn’t handle finding out if the answer was really no. Either way, he was seared. The pain had burned him such that he could all but reach into calcined gashes in his flesh and pick out flakes of burnt skin, which he figured he’d have a curious habit of eating, of feeding himself to himself, in order that he might disappear faster. So he delayed in reaching out to the studio and talking to this man, thinking that tomorrow would be the day, he’d do it then. He might even try to offer comfort to this other human, were it necessary. He’d want this person to feel the loss, too, so that he could try and think his daughter found some moments of what maybe no one else could provide, and worst of all, that Mason had not provided. The partner in so many of the movies might say, “I am so sorry for your loss.” He’d rise to the occasion. Work was work. Let’s leave that out of this. She was a great girl. I mean, woman, the partner might say, this man whose ejaculate Mason knew better than his own in its color and consistency. Mason would ask if she was ever happy, if she’d said anything about her future, her plans. Did she have any? Was she resigned? She was fighting, wasn’t she? By which he would really mean, tell me she wasn’t alone, even if all she had was you. And if she ever talked about what she used to love, and maybe still did. Had. If they ever went out to eat together. She always loved milkshakes. Were there any of those? Did you ever watch her drink a strawberry milkshake with stunning and improbable rapidity given her size? That was when it occurred to Mason that maybe it would have been a little easier if she hadn’t been quite so small and he was overtaken by new horror that seemed to add to all of the burnt parts of him that he’d never be able to ingest and therefore reduce. He was going to have to live until he didn’t. There was nothing his mouth could do about it. Just as he couldn’t enter any words into any contact form. They rendered him his own kind of impotent. The possessor of a flaccid soul. Phrases came to him like “Just give me a second, I’ve had too much to drink,” remembered conversations from drunken college days, and then Mason would look down at the glass of alcohol on the table next to his laptop and note that it had been emptied already. That was so fast. He felt like apologizing, but to whom? He was alone. Completely isolated. Gone in the ways that fundamentally, theoretically, or sometimes just in instances of emergency, knit human to human, and each to the living, three-dimensional world. His options were limited. The air. The earth. The corners of this upstairs theoretical office that he couldn’t conceive of using for office work again, though obviously he lied to his wife about why he was here. Deadlines, he’d say. Not, I am a finder of views, don’t you understand, the only one there has ever been or will ever be? At least my race ends with me. If you want to find a positive in it. Another defense mechanism joke for that which there was no defense. Apologize to his wife for the stealth and his one-man destruction of what was sacred and decent. And to the child. Her memory. Her ghost. Her presence. The hairs of her head that still had to be somewhere in the house and would be for a long time. Her bobbing image. But that also made him an active participant again, in on the mix of that which was well and demonstrably underway, and a word like “backshots” overran his brain and reheated his wounds. And thus would Mason realize again, for the latest time, which each time felt simultaneously like the rupturing and reinforcing of a necessary, protective veil, that he’d never send the email to the production companies or any of the websites. He had to preserve his hope that his daughter had found some form of real connection with someone, anyone, even this splurger of cock, when Mason himself had been unable to provide what she needed.


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