from Husband and Wife, a novel by Leah Stewart

03. July 2011 here now 0

But poetry was poetry. Inhalation. Exhalation. An irresistible tautology. Look at me how you look at me.

And at last, the external world gave way to the internal one. I sat in that café and wrote. I wrote quickly, in full conviction of the words’ necessity, their need to be arranged in just this way, and I thought of nothing, I felt nothing, but that need. What is it like, that feeling? What’s the right phrase, the right word? Try this: it’s like running, if running is for you a bliss of speed and color, and not a pounding of knees, the strain of ragged breathing. It’s like what running looks from the outside when you watch an Olympic race and one of the runners is just so fast, so breathtakingly fast, that there seems to be no effort at all in the forward motion, and she wins, of course she wins. She has to win. She is the distillation of herself, the embodiment of speed. Look at the exultation on her face. She flew out of her body and yet stayed in it. She has never been more perfectly what she is.

 


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