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[JUNE 2016.]

R. knows about gravity but wants to be told why the moon doesn’t fall down, and it turns out I can’t say; all I have is a paternal non-answer (“There's a thing called ‘stable orbit...’”). So I’m on notice that I’ll have to start looking things up.

By coincidence or very deep design I’ve been reading in Gravity and Grace after going to see Kaija Saariaho’s oratorio about Simone Weil: great music, her sweepy idiom with a chamber orchestra (a really good one, International Contemporary Ensemble) has more of a contemplative Webern sound, Julia Bullock sings like anything, and the libretto was biopic-grade sentimentalizing that ought to have just been replaced with words written by Weil herself. Which is why I’ve been reading them on the train. Notebook extracts and very short, suitable for a first sortie on the workday, if not for a desk calendar. Pour atteindre le détachement total, le malheur ne suffit pas. Il faut un malheur sans consolation.

And I like my job. But the lack of time is absolutely general, my drummer and bassist are too busy to write back, everyone is just trying to make a living out here in Pacific City, where every strongbox has a hole in the bottom. The ground itself, measured and priced, shrinks by inches under your feet....

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