INTERPLANETARY AFFAIR


The image that I held in my mind formulated at once one-dimensional and tender, having stopped at some point then naturally formed itself into a cocoon so that now I could no longer remember that strange girl's organic functions. All my tender feelings for the woman, my sister or my wife, defined by an abstract extrapolation of something I either remembered or composed, were heightened by my distance from her, by what she composed and consisted of.


I carefully took out a notebook I hadn't touched since the day when I began my travesty on time and space, and tried to write, soundlessly, imitating the clean virtual space of words typed in Microsoft (they were micro- too small to be detected in this dimension and soft - too soft to be heardÍ only this observation would be too small and quiet to even catch the attention of that merciless corporate conglomerate).

My love: I write not to you, but to your future, not to your desires now that torment me instead of you while you are asleep in a deep coma under Siberian snows, dropped off somewhere before the airplane began to approach the North Pole on its way to San Francisco, but to your subjunctive pastÍ


Poor Winston Smith, I thought to myself, envying him for the harrowing weight of the words that he once wrote in a diary (while mine were unnoticeable, micro, soft, and lighter than air) and at the same time pitying him for the fact that he lived in 1984 whereas the woman I loved was only four years old in that year, and now she was temporarily dead. He lived, after all, in a static moment, being in a novel, just as the girl who wrote the nameless texts somehow must have also ceased moving.

a) Linguistically, literature has a tendency to stagnate and limit the development of a living language- in any case, it stays the rate of its development. Hence Russian, subjected to the despotism of its literature, remains a linguistic adolescent.

b) The emigres of the First Wave, scared off by the spectre of communism that swept them off like a broom, served the rest of the world with the function of being a time-capsule- their Russian, in particular that of Bunin and Kuprin, while poliglot bilingual Nabokov was another case altogether, stopped evolving past the acute Chekhovian bourgeois existentialism that had just begun to develop at the beginning of the century. As a result, by 1940 and 1950 they were still dipping from that bottomless well while the rest of the world, and even Socialist-Realist Russia, were breaking into the first giggles of post-modernism like the first taste of an LSD stamp.

c) An emigre arriving to a foreign country as a teenager stops developing in Russian and continues to develop only in English. But his linguistic identity will penetrate into his existential identity- his Russian side will remain an impression of the age and society that he has left behind, and which would have otherwise been swept off the face of the earth at the next instant.


Ergo, if time is quantified, then to immigrate means to extrapolate that static moment into another time frame, and a branching of time occurs: on one side times moves and each cartoon frame is renewed, while on the other the frame stays the same and stays only to influence the other time current by its static, therefore overwhelmingly imposing context.