The journey through another world, beyond bad dreamsbeyond the memories of a murdered generation,cartographed in captivity by bare survivorsmakes sacristans of us all.The old ones go our bail, we oblate preachers of our tribes.Be careful, they say, don't hock the beads of kinship agonies; the moire-effect of unfamiliar hymnsupon our own, a change in pitch or shrillness of the voicetransforms the ways of song to words of poetry or proseand makes distinctionsno one recognizes.Surrounded and absorbed, we tread like Etruscanson the edge of useless law; we prayto the giver of prayer, we give the cane whistlein ceremony, we swing the heavy silver chainof incense burners. Migration makes new citizens of Rome.
She was a woman still controlled by the traumas of her girlhood. It made more sense to put her three-year-old self in the dock. As Dr Byford explained, she was really the victim of a vicious, peculiarly female psycological disorder: she felt one thing and did another. She was a stranger to herself.And were they still like that, she wondered - these new girls, this new generation? Did they still feel one thing and do another? Did they still only want to be wanted? Were they still objects of desire instead of - as Howard might put it - desiring subjects? No, she could see no serious change. Still starving themselves, still reading women's magazines that explicitly hate women, still cutting themselves with little knives in places they think can't be seen, still faking their orgasms with men they dislike, still lying to everybody about everything.
My hair would continue to gray, and then one day, it would fall out entirely, and then, on a day meaninglessly close to the present one, meaninglessly like the present one, I would disappear from the earth. And all these emotions, all these yearnings, all these data, if that helps to clinch the enormity of what I'm talking about, would be gone. And that's what immortality means. It means selfishness. My generations belief that each one of us matters more than you or anyone else would think.