I’m writing this forward before the piece is even done. This should speak volumes about how intimate this experience has been to me and will forever be. Sure, some word plays and structures in what you’re about to read (why by the way?) were intentional. I gave them thought and directed them with my conscious skill. Most of it however was born burning, searing my insides. A lot of the process that went into this was vomiting. I found the words pouring from my fingertips, taking their own shape unto the electronic page. And this foreword as well. I simply woke up with the need to write it, regardless of the fact that the piece is not done. However, if there is anything that I have learned from this torturous journey, it is not to build dams or keys for these emotions.
I’ve written a few things before this but completed only a few. Mostly poems. Each time I set down to write something longer, the first few pages would fly. I would be excited, innovative and wholly immersed in the story I was creating. But I always felt that it was too primal. I couldn’t accept that this was writing. This thing that I love so much, stories, had to be more refined, less chthonic. And so, I constructed doors and channels, carefully structuring my wilder thoughts into something that could be recognized as literature. It wasn’t bad. I’m pretty good with dialogue and have read enough science fiction to have an inquisitive mind. But I always lost interest after the 15th page or so. It’s more than that; the interest was still there, but it felt dulled, distant. I couldn’t tap into my creative energies as I did in the beginning. Where I spent my days just dreaming of getting back to writing, instead I came to dread free time, knowing that whatever I was working on would demand my attention. And I just didn’t have it in me to reach past all those barriers and keep writing.
So when I wrote the first part of the Demented World, ‘Books’, I was a bit shocked. Luckily, instead of recoiling away from that shock, I tapped into it. From that was born ‘Corners’, the second part. My friends, the people who helped me through this taxing endeavor, will tell you what I told them: when my fingers quickly raced to the mouse and added “The Demented World – Part I” at the top of the screen, I had no idea why they were doing that. The ongoing structure of the piece was born far, far earlier than my thoughts on it or any plans I had. I added some embellishment of my own, but most of it was immediate, sub-conscious and blank to me. Now that we’ve discussed this I can get to the point of this foreword:
This foreword is a contradiction.
If there is a single theme that can be said to run through The Demented World, it’s the basic inability of humans to communicate. More than that, it is the basic fragmentation of the world around us, our basic inability to properly analyze, understand and process our own life. Therefore a foreword, what is essentially an attempt to give context or further shed light on the creation following it, is pointless. And that’s why you’ll notice I haven’t done it so far. I spoke of my own emotions or lessons learned but haven’t given you any information on what to expect. But the basic need of writing, the basic art of the writer, is to communicate. This is why I wrote The Demented World: I was trying to explain, to tell people how I feel. I found the medium of conversation to be too contained, not primal enough. And so I took to writing which is, in essence, a monologue. And I let most structures go and simply allowed the words to pour onto the page.
So, I do want to explain some things. You won’t find a primer to understanding what’s to follow. Indeed, I am not sure understanding is the purpose of it, if it even has a purpose. When reading this piece while it was being written, many of my friends asked me “What did you mean here?” or “are you sure that’s what you’re going for?” And I usually replied with “I have no idea. It is what it is”. However, there are three basic ideas that are addressed in The Demented World, along with countless minor thoughts, themes and motifs. This is why the piece is divided into three parts. Each one can be broadly (very broadly) described as handling a single idea:
A) Part Aleph deals mostly with the people and things around me. Surveying the world, I find mostly things that are shattered but believe themselves whole. Objects, people, goals, organizations, societies, all try to present a whole and complete facade. But in fact, the cracks are apparent to the astute observer. In addition, the part begins to elaborate on the internal world that I encounter every day and the way my attempts to order it are meaningless. Aleph is the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet.
B) Part Berkanan deals with an internal conflict. This conflict flows over to the external world but is essentially motivated by an absence of an internal map with which to understand oneself. This is the most primal and basic emotion I deal with on a day to day basis. My own research into myself, searching for an ordered way to understand myself, has resulted only in chaos and shattering. I do not complain of this state since I believe it is prevalent in all humans, whether acknowledged or not. But, it is still difficult to handle and Part Berkanan speaks a bit about that. Berkanan is the second letter in the Swedish alphabet.
C) Part Triennial finally turns towards some sort of peace. It ends on an unclear note though, so the exact method of handling the first two parts is unclear. If Part Aleph is my current life and Part Berkanan is my current state of internal affairs, then Part Triennial is the way I deal with them both. It deals with the basic difficulty of creating yourself in the face of all this shattered information and the necessity of internal power and security.
Finally, I would like to dedicate this…creation to several people without whom none of it could have been possible. To Keren, Yanai, Alon and Alona, the people who read through this shattered dream of words: the medium is too short to thank you or to express what your words and thoughts meant to me during this process. I love each of you a special love, tinted with its own colours and imperfections. Thank you.
To you reader, I must apologize. I hope you are able to view what you find next with compassion and forgive this feeble attempt at speech in a place of silence. Always remember:
“The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.”
-Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám