In Preparation for Setting a Watch


It is best to begin with one’s feet planted firmly on the ground, for time is elusive and
this approach lends a comforting, if essentially false, sense of stability to the proceedings.
This, of course, is to be done only after a suitable authority to use in determining the
correct time to which one is to set one’s watch has been located. It must be duly noted in
passing that such an authority is measuring absolutes in a relative and inconstant world
and is most surely not to be trusted for anything other than the correct time, which may in
any case be of little, if any, use. Nevertheless, if one is determined to set one’s watch, one
must proceed in the manner most appropriate to the concept of time. One must, of course,
be predisposed to using a certain amount of time to determine and attempt to “fix” time
for one’s later use, a delicate and occasionally irritating conceptual balance to be sure. If,
however, one has planted one’s feet firmly on an ant hill, one may be given another view
of many-faceted time. And if one’s feet were planted bare upon a sharp object, a truer
understanding of the relativity of time may be obtained while one is bleeding, and in less
time than it takes to actually set one’s watch, time may in fact be “running out.” For death
may be understood as an abstract concept bearing a rather unique relationship to time.
Just as it may be difficult to understand the philosophical implications of half a cup of
water, so is it difficult to understand the value of the correct time mounted carefully upon
a dead man’s wrist.

Fiction. Modern Abstract Fables.

(First edition, hardcover with dustjacket, 524 pages, $36.50 USD.)

Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days draws from fairy tales, a condescending of a 1938 Social Studies reader for 6th grade, an 1890 handbook on marital compatibility, numerous annoying educational advancement studies, the myths and legends of third-world countries and minority peoples, pulp fiction, a history of carnival side shows, folktales, frequent conversations with Crows, Owls and a wide variety of underground inhabitants, insects and the people who collect them, Joseph Cornell, Günter Eich, Russell Edson, the French Surrealist poets, the Quay Brothers, letterpress printing, and the author’s inability to channel his imagination linearly.

Begin from the beginning, catch up, read daily. Just refer to the Burrow Guide.