My fingers curl through the holes in the wicker, through the wet grass beneath it, trying to hold tight to the sharp blades of the present. Somewhere in my brain a sinkhole is bubbling over, and each bubble contains a scene from a tiny sunken world ... I have never been the prophet of my own past before. It makes me wonder how the healthy dreamers can bear to sleep at all, if sleep means that you have to peer into that sinkhole by yourself. ... I had almost forgotten this occipital sorrow, the way you are so alone with the things you see in dreams.
Disappointment Can do a couple things. It can drop you into a giant sucking sinkhole of depression, a place you have to fight to climb out of. Or it can trigger an epic mania to overcome the odds and transform failure into success. Say you swing as high as the chains will take you because you seek the thrill of flight, and on the up- kick, you lose your seat. Injury is likely. But if you worry about falling down, and never chance "up, " the sky will remain forever out of reach.
Disappointment Can do a couple things. It can drop you into a giant sucking sinkhole of depression, a place you have to fight to climb out of. Or it can trigger an epic mania to overcome the odds and transform failure into success. Say you swing as high as the chains will take you because you seek the thrill of flight, and on the up- kick, you lose your seat. Injury is likely. But if you worry about falling down, and never chance "up," the sky will remain forever out of reach.
Am I more afraid Of taking a chance and learning I'm somebody I don't know, or of risking new territory, only to find I'm the same old me? There is comfort in the tried and true. Breaking ground might uncover a sinkhole, one impossible to climb out of. And setting sail in uncharted waters might mean capsizing into a sea monster's jaws. Easier to turn my back on these things than to try tjem and fail. And yet, a whisper insists I need to know if they are or aren't integral to me. Status quo is a swamp. And stagnation is slow death.
[Vestiges begins] from principles which are at variance with all sober inductive truth. The sober facts of geology shuffled, so as to play a rogue's game; phrenology (that sinkhole of human folly and prating coxcombry); spontaneous generation; transmutation of species; and I know not what; all to be swallowed, without tasting and trying, like so much horse-physic!! Gross credulity and rank infidelity joined in unlawful marriage, and breeding a deformed progeny of unnatural conclusions!
Many suburban legislators representing affluent school districts use terms such as "sinkhole" when opposing funding for Chicago's children. "We can't keep throwing money, " said Governor Thompson in 1988, "into a black hole." The Chicago Tribune notes that, when this phrase is used, people hasten to explain that it is not intended as a slur against the race of many of Chicago's children. "But race, " says the Tribune, "never is far from the surface...
Because I don't care what anyone says or how often or winningly they say it: no one will ever, ever be able to persuade me that life is some awesome, rewarding treat. Because, here's the truth: life is a catastrophe. The basic fact of existence - of walking around trying to feed ourselves and find friends and whatever else we do - is a catastrophe. Forget all this ridiculous 'Our Town' nonsense everyone talks: the miracle of a newborn babe, the joy of one simple blossom, Life You Are Too Wonderful To Grasp, &c. For me - and I'll keep repeating it doggedly till I die, till I fall over on my ungrateful nihilistic face and am too weak to say it: better never born, than born into this cesspool. Sinkhole of hospital beds, coffins, and broken hearts. No release, no appeal, no 'do-overs' to employ a favored phrase of Xandra's, no way forward but age and loss, and no way out but death.