The Dark Edge of Fiction

Spring                                                                               Bloodroot Moon

“As our circle of knowledge expands, so does the circumference of darkness surrounding it.”  A. Einstein

In one part of my life I chomp down on facts, ideas, connections, linkages.  Known and knowable things.  Stuffing them in, sometimes sideways, cramming them into the remaining nooks and crannies, or, rather growing dendrites and increasing those neuronal connections.  The Connectome.  My Connectome.

But.  When I write, instead of pouncing on the learning.  Trying to take it out for a spin in, say, an essay or a short non-fiction book.  I don’t.  My fiction comes from the darkness, from the circumference surrounding the knowledge, the place where the knowledge cannot go and would be of little help.

Fiction has its coherence with reality in spite of the definition, say on a continuum from realism to fantasy.  Even in fantasy, even one based on a world not this one, the characters are recognizable, they have to be, otherwise the fiction would not be communication but gibberish.

So, yes, there is that leash, but it’s a long one.  Often in fantasy long enough to lie useless on the sidewalk next to an orange lawn under an azure sun.  Oh, if you wanted, you could pick it up and follow it back to a Dairy Queen and ocean-going shipping, but why would you want to?  I mean, the action is at the other end of the leash.  That’s where I’d want to go.

And that’s the edge of fiction that lies alongside, shares a border with, the darkness.  Out there the leash no longer matters.  Except as a reminder that we’re all in this together somehow.  Somehow.


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