Written by: F. John Surells
It’s almost voting time. So, here’s my vote for those who aren’t concerned with the Joneses, and who don’t
feel they need to follow them. And here’s my endorsement of those who don’t particularly care about how much money
the people down the street possess, or whether those people are seeking some sort of public office, or whether they’re
basically liberal or conservative.
And truthfully, my thoughts tend to concentrate much more upon artistic matters, and especially literary
matters, than they do upon anything political. And, as I’ve “watched” recent written trends, it seems to me as if people
nowadays are trying more and more to “string” numbers of unrelated thoughts together into “comprehensive” written
pieces. And that must be the so-called “move-novel” in operation, even when that tactic is being used in forms of
writing other than novels.
So, as I begin to employ that blueprint for compositional emancipation myself here, let me tell you that I know
a man who lives outside the green city. And he’s a very special man I think, but then, aren’t all mortals somehow
“special?” Oh, they must be, else why would they have been granted life upon that planet third from the sun?
And some time ago, the leader of our so-called “artistic enclave,” which is really a group of creatively minded
individuals, asked that person if he’d visit us here in our city. And we were surprised when he said he would. And he
came to us from the green city on a Wednesday forenoon, and some of us went to lunch with him at a north side
And I remember taking him to see the house Joseph Same grew up in on the south side. And I know he very
much wished to meet the infamous Mr. Same that day; unfortunately Joe and Sharon had made previous commitments.
But our guest did get to meet another famous member of our north side group, that being Corzer (nickname) or
Charles Platt (real name). And of course Corzer had just recently returned from Paris where he’d met a young French
woman who’d really, to use a well-worn pedestrian phrase, “gotten under his skin.”
And I can still recall Corzer relating his story about himself and Valerie (his French girlfriend whom he’d
recently left, but apparently still loved) to our guest. And he asked our visitor what he thought he (Corzer) should do
about this dilemma. And the guest said “Charles, if you really love her, and she really loves you, then don’t let her go.
If what you’ve told me is true , then most likely she’s spending her days now sulking there in the city of light, just as
you are here in this city where forces from other realms and realities intervene to change the course of history.”
So Corzer thanked our guest for his advice, and said he’d take it into consideration when he made his final
decision as to what he should do concerning Valerie. And then our guest spent the remainder of the day talking with
various members of our artistic group, and visiting other “sights” within and outside our city. And then he stayed the
night at my house, and left the next morning.
But a few days ago, I thought I saw him in our city again. He’d apparently returned, but this time
evidently wished to “explore” our area on his own. I was driving by in my car, and I was sure I saw him walking along
our city’s train tracks near the coal yards. “Name Deleted” I called to him. “Where are you going? Will you be staying
in our city permanently now? Will you join our artistic north side enclave?”
And he called back to me and said “John, I’m not worthy to live among people such as you. The brightness of
illumination sent forth by the creativity of those within your group stimulates my mind, but also shocks my soul.”
And thus I surmised conversation was not what he wished to find or experience at that moment, so I left him
continue on his way, and drove off. But when I got home, I remembered how years ago, when I was still a child, before
I’d become involved in all I’ve already experienced here in this city of questioning, I’d always cherished the months of
And sometimes a quiet summer breeze, wafting through an opened window, would slightly shake the leaves of
trees which stood near the garden. And as I’d sense that wind-induced movement, I’d sometimes experience a sensation
I can only explain to you as minor shock. And today I’m wondering if that sensation was the same as, or at least akin to
that referenced by my friend when he called back to me that day and said the creativity of we who live here in this city
stimulates his mind, but also shocks his soul.
And I fear I’m somewhat shocked just now. Therefore, can you tell me if all seasons are now really signposts
for those of us still alive, and fragments of time for those deceased, wherein their souls now wait in longing for
reunification with their corporeal bodies? And if that’s the case, tell me they wait where light is timeless, rather than
where Lucifer reigns amidst fire and darkness.
And, “on a summer night,” that’s all that was written on a piece of paper I recently found lying near a park
bench in our city. And having been given such slight information, how could I rightfully say whether or not the writer
of that note meant to create an entire “written piece” around that time of year and day? Yes, maybe that’s what someone
intended to do, but then decided against doing so, or, at least doing so then and at that particular time and location.
But maybe someone left that note there as a challenge of sorts. Thus, imagine yourself now as someone either
at a locale where a number of people are congregated, or as a pedestrian simply walking down a street, when suddenly
someone approaches you and says “On a summer night,” and then quickly walks away. Will you finish his or her
thought? Will you attempt to create a “written piece” from it?
Maybe you will. But then maybe fear of failure will keep you from undertaking such a task.
And I know that the man from the green city takes failure seriously. In fact, just yesterday he actually called
me via telephone and asked if I’d watched his local football team in action on a certain recent week night. I said I had,
and knew whereof he spoke. And I told him though it wouldn’t matter much to the history of mankind, I could imagine
the disastrous effects left behind by those who, unqualified, sought to pass judgment upon others in zones where fields
end. And then, more bothersome still, they tried to tell us that what had really been caught by one man, had, in their
unprofessional opinion, actually been caught by another.