Saturday, February 26, 2005

The Sheltering Sky



Paul Bowles spoke this at the beginning of Bertolucci's The Sheltering Sky


Because we don't know when we will die,
we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well.
Yet everything happens only a certain number of times,
and a very small number really.
How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, some afternoon that's so deeply a part of your being that you can't even conceive of your life without it.
Perhaps four or five times more, perhaps not even that.
How many more times will you watch the full moon rise?
Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless.'


It came up in another context, but in my mind it connects perfectly with the sudden realisation a couple of days ago, the heart rate of de Mille, my cat, was almost twice as fast as mine. Try it! Just put your hand on the rib cage of your dog, cat, rabbit, hamster.



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