On What There Was

That’s all it ever was.

There’s the hook; watch out for the line, before I sink you. You’re wondering what I’m talking about, and already you’re anticipating what my next sentence is going to reveal. Lacan is laughing at you; so is Laplace. What an odd couple, Lacan and Laplace. Laplace knows that whatever I type next may feel like a decision enacted from a position of freedom, but it remains all I was ever going to type. I’m not even sure what I’m going to type next, but Laplace’s demon surely does.

Lacan knows that I may be typing, but whatever it is my sentence means won’t be determined until I reach its end. I retrospectively fit meaning across the sentence, because all my language consists of is a reference to a reference to a reference; a system of meaning determined only by degrees of difference.

That’s all it ever was.

There it is again. You’re beginning to see the line, but you haven’t sunk yet. It hasn’t sunk in; you haven’t been taken in by what’s going on. Is it a game? Perhaps. Perhaps that’s all it ever was, just a game. Perhaps I don’t even know of what this line will consist; maybe, perhaps, possibly.

Listen, it’s not a game. It’s serious; deadly serious. These sentences run around you; twisting and turning. Folding in on themselves as you try to extract any sensibility from them. Slipping from view, escaping, just as you are about to grasp it. The meaning, buried deep, bubbling to the surface; it escapes each time to try to pin it down.

The word is the murder of the thing, she tells me. But if the thing I try to put into words is ‘meaning’, does that mean I am murdering meaning? So every time I speak, I slice the throat of meaning; draining its blood, drip by drip.

Look at this mess of signifiers! Where is that which they signify? Constantly slipping; slipping out from underneath my words. At least if they’ve slipped, then perhaps they’re not murdered. Perhaps they’ll live on, waiting for the next stroke of a pen, or a knife.

That’s all it ever was.

Here it comes. Watch carefully, because you might miss it. It’s quiet, sneaking; it doesn’t grab you by the throat. You don’t realise what’s happened until it’s too late. This is one big sentence. It’s all just a sentence. Your story; your life. One big sentence. Everything you’ve worked for; one big sentence.

It might have had meaning, but it steadily slipped away. Every time you spoke, you murdered the chance of meaningfulness breaking through. One big sentence. You work. You play. You fuck. You write. You speak. You destroy meaning with every stroke of your pen, and every sound that escapes your mouth.

That’s all it ever was.

That’s all it ever was; one big sentence. Everything you did, everything you worked for; all for this moment. In the most precise sense, you are doing exactly what you were always going to do. You’re exactly who you would always be.

Who are you?

You’re sunk. Hook, line and sinker. That’s it, because that’s all it ever was. One big sentence.

And cut: silence.

What did it mean?

l, 2014.


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