Sunday, June 30, 2013

fenwick - 6. the castle

by minette de montfort

illustrated by roy dismas

editorial consultant: Prof. Dan Leo




admiral morwyn stood looking out the north facing window of the "conservatory" on the top floor of castle morwyn, as had been his wont, at that particular time of day, for as long as any living morwyn, or any of the servants, could remember.

behind, him "aunt" morwyn, so called because she was the oldest of the numerous aunts - all the others of whom had to make do with proper names - "aunt sophie". "aunt jane", etc - asked him,

"what are you looking at, out that window?"

"i am looking out the window."

"i know you are looking out the window. but what do you see, looking out the window?"

"what would there be to see?"

"whatever is out there."

"it has not been my experience that there is a great deal to see out there."

"you are testy this morning, admiral. have you not had your breakfast?"

"it is not morning. it is afternoon. the sun has reached its zenith, as is it is inclined to do, and is now beginning its pitiless descent into oblivion. an oblivion all too short lived, as it will be back to do its mischief again tomorrow, all too predictably."

"i asked you if had had your breakfast. i did not invite your tiresome philosophical musings."

"observations of the sun's path hardly qualify as philosophy."

"they did in babylon and chaldea. and perhaps in assyria and the minoan empire as well."

"perhaps," agreed the admiral. "but not in today's world."

"today's world! what an expression! what other world would it be, but today's world?"

the admiral did not deign to answer.

he stood silent, continuing to look out the window.

behind him aunt morwyn remained silent also.

the subject of the admiral's breakfast was forgotten, or at least no longer alluded to, which is not the same thing. is anything ever totally forgotten? a question which has perplexed, or at least engaged philosophers in times ancient and modern.

"modern!" what an absurd concept. reader, we take a stand with aunt morwyn, in regarding the word as totally ridiculous.

human language is a dark overgrown jungle in desperate need of judicious pruning. at least ninety percent of the words which clutter it should be eliminated. what better place to start, than with the word "modern" ?

reader, if you exist and wheresoever you be, we promise that that word will no longer deface this narrative.



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