Saturday 15 December 2012

Slide - Frayed String

A twist of dirty string.
            “Back then?”
            Strictly speaking, no. There are times when the slides slip only a little. You know the way it works; there are pinch points in all our lives. I’ve not long slipped back and I surprise myself to remember that I have at all. That’s important I think. It’s also unusual in that by now the threads that make up the string have twisted back together so much that I don’t think about the string at all. Or I wasn’t till now when there’s an inch of twine been left on the table.  It’s because I’ve made no decision, and the pinch point is still here. I have clear choices. I went away to get perspective.
This is something new. This slide is very similar to the last I knew and the changes if subtle are ridiculously profound. For the first I’m not looking forward to Christmas at all. That is so unusual I might as well be on another planet entirely.
“So what will you do?” Mme Roux doesn’t really care. She’s reading a copy of The Yellow Book. Beardsley is so beyond the current troubles that any symbolism is lost on me.
“Stay, go, or leave for good.”
Mme Roux nods. She looks up at last. She smiles, “Fight?”
“Too much collateral damage, as I think is still the current way of saying it?”
She doesn’t agree. She knows I don’t. She says, “Nothing that happens is now your responsibility. You have no blame to take. A choice forced upon you is a consequence of they that make you.”
“Very profound,” I don’t think.
“It is. You have honour. You have a strong moral code. The only person that may adequately judge you darling - is you. You can stay, because that is the right thing to do. You will suffer for that, because it is not the right thing for you from a choice where the wrong thing is not of your making. You can go, because that is the right thing for you. You can leave because that is always your choice, your right. I think you will stay.”
“I have not decided,” and I haven’t. I would always do the right thing, but here that is to give way to a tiny, small sort of tyranny. That is to be manipulated, to do what is right in the face of what is wrong. That is to condone villainy, however slight that might be. That is indeed to give way to a threat; and I never do that.
“You’ll smile, and you’ll nod but you can go one of three ways,” says Mme Roux. She rises to find the kettle. She hasn’t much of a facility with plugs. Not with kettles which should sit upon a gas ring. She calls back from the kitchen, “And what is the limitation of time in all this?”
“You perceive I think why I remember certain things?”
“I do,” she says before adding, “Clever boy.”  

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