Evaporation

NOTHING IS WHAT IT SEEMS TO BE

 

You lust after water. It could be any liquid, but for the sake of familiarity let us consider water. You lust after water. You love the way it greets your hand when you dip it in, the way it swirls around your fingers. After completing the chapter on boiling (specific temperature under a given pressure, source of heat necessary, takes place throughout the liquid), you are interested in evaporation.

As I said, you lust after water. Only the liquid form. Not ice, not vapour.

You have had water for some time. You don’t want it to vaporize away. You know the laws of boiling and you confidently make arrangements accordingly, bringing down the temperature of the water to a bare minimum. You fight hard, because the colder it gets, the more it tends to pick up heat. But you fight hard and you are patient and don’t give up and you keep trying and you cool it all down and the molecules of the liquid are less agitated. You are contented that you will have liquid water for ever.

You never knew about evaporation.

The water starts disappearing. You look frantically all over the place for any holes through which heat might be getting in, any malfunction you overlooked, any fault on your part. You try all measures, you go crazy cooling it down, and still it disappears. The liquid that churns inside the nooks of your heart in eddies and vortices of affection and desire transforms in front of your eyes into tendrils of pale vapour, a ghost of the water, melting into air, and you can do nothing about it.

Before long it is done. There is no more water. It never took any heat from anywhere. And it left you a present, the answer to wherefrom it got its heat — a chunk of ice. A chunk of frozen indifference, a block of coldness that won’t swirl, that won’t caress your hand as you dip it in. You try, and are gifted with frozen, painful, numb fingers. You cannot throw it away because it is part of the much-loved liquid you have lost, and all you can do with it is hurt your fingers and freeze your warm palms, but you still won’t throw it away.

That is all that remains with you. All that remains of the water you believed won’t go away, because you weren’t boiling it. Because it was cool.

You realize that your cooling it down never mattered. If you won’t give it any heat, it takes it from itself.

Then there is another part, the vaporized part. It will condense somewhere. Maybe some other place.

You run after it.

 

<IN ACTUAL PHYSICAL EVAPORATION, IF THE PRESSURE ON THE LIQUID IS NOT VERY LITTLE, SUCH VIGOROUS VAPORIZATION, WHERE PART OF THE LIQUID FREEZES BECAUSE OF EXTRACTED HEAT, WILL NOT TAKE PLACE. BUT AGAIN, THIS WAS NOT MEANT TO BE AN ACCOUNT OF ACTUAL PHYSICAL EVAPORATION. NOTHING IS WHAT IT SEEMS TO BE.>

ηōVō

In Me

There you go, the sky turns dark again. Over these infinite sands of desertion the grey clouds swirl. They caress the dunes that stand tall and red against the darkening sky. There flies the sand, helpless particles of my thought over the landscape of my doing, and hers. A bolt of pearly lightning tears the canvas of the sky in half and hurls like the trident of Zeus against the ground I love so much, my barren desert sands and the smell of rock, tears that died unseen in dark, quiet corners beneath the stones. And doubts that sometimes shake and shift the ground at night in small tremors that want to collapse the world.

I always knew I was a bird. With grey wings that turn brilliant white against the stormy sky. A bird that was part of Everything, part of being the lonely red stratified desert sands it flew over and part of being the violet angry swirls of the anxious sky it swam in, a part of everything that had created it and a part of everything it had created. And it was terribly afraid of this belonging, this inevitable association with Everything, for it only wanted to belong to itself and never get lost in the fearsome swirls of stranger thoughts.

Belong to itself, and her.

But then, it had to rain. The bloody sun bid its goodbye and could not say for certain when it would be back. The smoky curtain of black storm came out of nowhere and clothed my playful skies. Evening came like it always did outside me, only this time within, and with the same universal sadness that it always stood for. At night Hope would light the sky with its brilliant white fork of lightning, shouting over the din of the storms that everything would be okay, but when it was gone the featureless darkness of the night pressed even more and I was a prisoner in my own barren desert sands, a victim of my own doings. I clutched handfuls of the cold sand and hugged myself and pretended it would be all over with the next sunrise.

But it had to rain. That invisible and much-loved film came over the light of the sky, keeping out the more cheerful rays of the sun outside my domain. The low clouds swirled imperceptibly and rumbled right above my head. That cold breeze touched me with the feared huge expanse of Nothing that tingles my palms every time I look down from a great height.

And then it rained. All over the desert sands she came pouring, with all her memories, her eyes, her words, promises and hopes and difficulties we had passed and the alternate world we had discovered. It all came pouring, all over the desert sands in every direction I could see, affecting everything, bathing each particle of sand with itself. There was no refuge, no cover, nowhere to run. Nothing could be saved from the rain. I crouched and hugged myself, drenching in the grey rain that was my own doing, that came from the swirlings of a cloud that we had created. It is always this way inside my mind.

Some time has passed since then. The rains have left, although the clouds still hover above, higher up, but still keeping out the light of the day. The grounds shake more often, and some dunes have changed colour. I am no longer sure how firm these sands are beneath my feet, whether the quiet unstoppable whisper of the air from Nothing lurks among my particles of sand. I am not sure there is this world. I am not sure if I’ve been dreaming it all along.

ηōVō

 

The Point

A point is not an object. It has no weight, colour, nothing, no physical property. It has no dimension. It does not exist.

But it has one property: its position. Although it does not exist, that does not hinder it from occupying a position in its plane.

A point has no idea what it is. It barely exists, come on now. If it could exist beyond its pathetic confined state, maybe it could have known a thing or two about what it is, but it doesn’t, and we can’t do anything about it, can we.

If a point could accept its miserable pointless existence in space and get over it, if it could give up clinging to its single position and actually believe that there’s more to existence than this appointed corner, perhaps if it could question, and want to know, then — I don’t know — then maybe I could tell it a few things.

I could actually tell him that he isn’t as pitiful as he imagines himself to be, that there’s nothing to feel sad about really. I could, you know, actually go ahead and tell him that the big guys he worships and idolizes, namely the Lines, are just collections of points like him, and he could be like them if he wanted to be, and actually have a dimension and all, and have a direction to go towards, be straight or swing around or come around and intersect itself and all that pomp and show those Lines put up.

And what’s more, yes, I am going to tell him that his world, this Plane of which he is an infinitesimal corner, a position, is nothing more than an infinite number of miserable points like himself, defining each position in which this world exists. Forget about Lines, — those arrogant show-offs — I’m saying this world wouldn’t exist without a point to define each instance of its existence. Wake, Point, to reality. This world is a collection of you. You are a part, and you are the whole. You are nothing, for if I remove you, there will still be infinite other points to form this Plane. And yet you are all, for if I remove the Point, what will the Plane consist of?

I don’t know if you listened to me, Point. Perhaps you have not. Or perhaps you have, but you do not believe me. I’m not surprised. You have it in your nature. You are afraid of power and ability. That is why you so few of you can rise to be Lines and have direction, and so few of you are not afraid to unify with the Plane and be one with it. That is why your kind rarely make a mark, in spite of there being an infinite number of them.

I pity you, Point.

ηōVō