There’s a biography out there I’ve had a hand in telling. It’s the most difficult biography I’ve ever had to tell. It’s my biography – an autobiography, yes – but as such, it tells the story of many of the people who touched me over the years, inside my own shell; my cocoon; my swooning bewilderment, in fact … nothing but the truth, as well – nothing but my truth, I mean … of course …
You can find it over at the shorthand.com site. It’s called: “(A LETTER TO … an unknown woman)”, and it arcs over decades of lives, lived generally in the key of sad. But it’s also a tale of an eternal quest. It’s the universal quest to find some meaning, where only meaninglessness appears to exist instead.
I realise, now, that of course it only tells half the truth: and this for two fundamental reasons. Firstly, it only tells my point of view. It doesn’t tell anyone else’s. I guess, then, we could say it doesn’t even manage to tell half a truth: maybe, in truth, it tells a millisecond only.
Secondly, it ignores two other people who have influenced my life to such a degree that I could not be who I think and believe today without their having crossed my paths. One was a belovéd childhood sweetheart, who was my sweetheart before I knew the meaning of the word, and who was wrenched from me so painfully I don’t think I really ever recovered.
One was my salvation from such pain, for four short summer days; only to slip between my fairly fearful fingers.
And I also realise now that, p’raps to make up for not having told their stories, lifeworklab.uk, in its totality, has become – more than anything – a story about these two women: maybe a story about the wondrous reality that, in some occasionally difficult ways, all women are: maybe a story which misses out, too, other women (indeed, other men), who have felt about me what I neglected to properly feel about them.
Maybe, even, a story about the wondrous reality most of us men could rightly become, if only given half a goddamn chance.
I don’t know if what I say makes any sense to you.
I only know it does to me.