I’m not sure what it was this morning that threw me off. I got out of the car, and as I walked through the city, I imagined what a monk must feel like as he enters a city after a long time in his monkish seclusion.

Amazement? The good kind or the bad kind? Maybe he wouldn’t be phased by it. I had a feeling of pending overwhelmedment. So many people we are. I’m not really sure why this throws my layers out of register, but it seems so difficult. Where the Jesuses and Buddhi of the world have expanded their hearts to love this sentient mass of needs, loves, joys, weakness, I am tipsy because I am responsible for them. I have to help them. I have to solve them and they are too many to solve. [Personal affects hanging in windows that I can’t relate to and don’t understand.] Perhaps they are even happy, and I am the broken one.

I am on my way to a loud, motivational, expensive tech conference in a stadium and I am stunned by a large charcoal drawing of two men looking the same direction as me—that is, away—at nothing, at something. I am happily stunned because it is art, and I walked by the galleries in hopes of being stunned by art, and I am succeeding. I am also stunned because it is made by a hand.* It wasn’t even worked by a hand, but drawn. And I'm not sure why there is love in it. Not love—a man—a man, I am assuming—why there is a man in it. Our relationship is so easy and filled with nuance, with that thing poetry seems to have. This is an artifact. It is a silent moment of a note to me, scribed by a mute in his oversized notepad, hung in this window, and I get it. I want to buy it. I want it to be in my collection. I want to have a collection. I want to collect single things—wordless writings that have been touched, marked, created, said by a person’s hands, to me. Antidotes to my theoretical virtuality—not ideas of things—reproductions, illusions, copies—but Things Themselves. The magic that makes me melancholy is this: this is real, and I am hoping it all up.

*I am also stunned because it reminds me of comic books—bold, graphic—which tugs on a certain pre-teen chamber of my heart, among other things.**

**It should also be noted that I just read the novel The Adventures of Cavelier and Klay by Michael Chabon, which has as a central theme the emotional merits of writing, drawing, and reading comic books, which stirred many of the aforementioned fond emotions.