Remaining Light (published by Silas Finch)
Remaining Light, published by Silas Finch, 2016. 8.5 x 11 inches,
I’ve been in this sad office for three sad years. It has taken me this much time to bring a camera inside this place, and it wasn’t until now that I began to see. After all, the real light inside all things stays hidden, and that’s the light that is worth hunting. I’ve begun to catch flashes of it, the scent of it even. I’ve come to believe in it – the light, flickering in through the boredom of this dead space – so I move toward it.
I can’t afford a car, so I walk to and from my office job every day. My apartment is a broken hovel of dust downtown, overlooking the pools of piss on Broadway. The space between me and the office is Skid Row – an area of downtown Los Angeles that is “home” to over 30,000 of the city's homeless. I pass by their makeshift tents every day and night, and I’m not sure what exactly this walk, seeing these horrors and what the world does to the less fortunate, is doing to me.
This is a love letter to the death thoughts and the dead days that have haunted me for so long. This is a song for the hopeless, the whores, the addicts, the lost, the losers, the worthless, the desperate, the sick, and the dying – they are the light. Life goes on and on, and for so many it’s a boring and lonesome journey uphill - a gigantic void sprinkled with moments of happiness and maybe love, if you are lucky enough to find such a luxury. I cling to so many moments that are right in front of me now. The past is gone. The future will never come. Life will not be the pleasant journey my middle class upbringing promised. I deserve nothing. I own nothing. And the more I open myself up to exploring this void the better off I am.
The fragments of text scattered throughout this mess are taken from The Hermit – the only novel written by that grandfather absurdist Eugene Ionesco. The work is largely forgotten, as the best things often are. The book fell into my lap quite randomly as a teenager, in a used book store in Toronto. I was taken by its bright sun-yellow cover. I read the book sometime later that year. The rat race, the solitude, and the existential dilemmas described therein were of a sort I was too inexperienced to truly understand. Now, as a fucked-up adult with too many problems to list, I know them all too well.
So here is life and here is death, and here we are drifting somewhere in between. Hang in there, wherever you are, and take a good long look at that ugly, boring, tragic, sad, dizzying, and dull comedy right in front of you. It will be the most wondrous thing you will ever see.
Jordan Sullivan, Los Angeles, 2016