In the action of returning a death occurs. There is a passing in the years that enforces a mythological character on things. We tend to think of this myth in terms of qualities enduring despite there being a gaze to absorb the erosion. We are comfortable to leave things standing. Adhering to an implicit faith which ascribes substance to materiality, the spirit of things grows undiminished. It’s too soon to say what exists in lieu of this spirit other than an absolute annihilation of essence.
The city has died. It has fallen beneath itself and is now reduced to a half-life. The return to mythological space confirms the brevity in which that myth exists. Yet, if the idea of the myth is short-lived, and if its foundation is illusory, then its extinction lingers for centuries afterwards. In the decline of space and time, there arises a morbid craving which will – and it is always does – manifest itself in two ways.
Adherence to origins entails a proximity to entrances. In that way the essence – the sign of things to come – affirms the quality of that thing. At the gateway of spatial memory we are not lost. Instead, we embark on a waiting that speaks of a future that has not yet begun. With this a projection of sound, cast from memory, is able to substitute for what in turn has curdled. Cities are labyrinths in terms of their alcoves. Images can be displaced, sounds disrupted. In time we lose our grip on what was once central and so revert to the entrance so that we are assured of at least something of an original essence. For the adherer of things, it is preferable to grasp something that is minimal in its spatial occupancy (but actual) rather than hold out into the nothingness which endangers that origin to absolute collapse despite being vast in its scale.
For the adherer, there is a lack of purpose to their disintegration other than brute determinism. Logic precedes context. Demythologized space finds its myth in its beginning. Until the time that dissolution encroaches upon that entrance, then this logic is a consistent one. At the point of imminent absence, however, the centre dissipates and with it so to does the adherer. Realizing that things are in the process of liquidation, dispersion beckons.
Space and time have fallen from grace. There is a return which has marked the absolute absence of spirit. The imbued becoming-towards a distant future has been subjugated by a stark facticity which speaks from the shallow depths of presence. Here: in what is meant by this term? I am standing inside of the zone which no longer corresponds and there is no other way to unearth its entrance but through a process of brutal mirroring. Hallways and aisles which continue to breathe through the scorn of time. We forget this formula: – things live. So, in lieu of the entrance there emerges a suffocation framed by origins that are now adrift. Nightmares consist in the impasse that no longer bears witness. Not attached to the folklore of architectural testimony, we die in the hours which have ceased to cultivate being.
This is the fall which invokes death. Who lives in this elsewhere? Later I will recount how I attempted to ensnare this temporal dislocation by way of an empirical pathology. For now it is enough to experience the fall in terms of an inertia that can only be understood when encountering a radical disjunction between the living and the dead. We come to know our memories when they no longer align with their spatial origin. In that peculiar and obsessive revision, which is always urged by some subterranean resistance to the morbid – I will not cease to navigate this relation – there smoulders a truth dislodged from its habitual context and instead re-phrased in a situation estranged, and thereafter wedged in the pockets of enclosed contemplation.