In normal, complacent life, there are cracks and fissures all around. They take the form of small grievances. They're the dreams dreamed while at a desk, while wondering about one course of action or another, while dropping off to sleep. They are things you know about your family and friends that you don't tell them, because they would be hurtful and ruin the here and now.
Other times, times of upheaval, everything is cut loose from its boundaries and thrown around. This means even the smallest of fissures can become the broken dam. Did you understand the pressure behind that crack?
I am having grave doubts about the security of anything in the world. Anything. I suppose I understood abstractly, but to believe the world is blowing up is another thing. Part of me would not be surprised if the planet's surface turned to gas and we exploded like the sun in one blinding flash, sometime around 1:30 or so this afternoon. Just to pick an arbitrary time.
The summer I turned 13 my mother informed me that all her friends’ daughters had jobs, and that really, I should be working. I remember having a moment of total blind panic. “I don’t know how to get a job,” I mumbled back. Because what in the heck could I do? Thirteen-year-olds have few marketable skills, except maybe a propensity toward insecurity and a total confusion about their relationship to authority figures. They would make great writers of terrible soft rock songs, but not much else. During the summer, I liked to lie around and read, go to the library for more books, and then lie around and read some more. I liked to be alone, for the most part, as I still do. Suddenly I had to join the working world?
Anyway, I ended up volunteering at the Forest Service and with the Humane Society, and had what can only be described as a distinctly horrible time. I was shy, about 5-20 years younger than everyone, and no one really knew what to do with me. My father picked me up each day and I put on a brave face for him, but really, it wasn’t at all fun. By the next summer, I was ready to get a job at the municipal pool, but I could have hidden out under our bushes in the backyard with a book for another season, out of sight of the big wide world, just as happily.