Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
By misrerable happenstance, I have found myself reading end-of-life-as-we-know-it books. Watching movies. I hate these things. Why must everyone show us ourselves in the funhouse mirror as if we don't already know these things. As if the oil does not still spew beneath the surfaces we do know. We can read. We can watch movies intelligently. Why does no-one offer something better. Something more like a way out?
I have read The Road now. I watched The Book of Eli. I hear of God and Word all around me as we all, collectively, hallucinate our demises. Gak. I don't need hapless romance. Christ!
Authors are smug, as though they see these things ahead of our time. I stole this book, I borrowed it with a click from my local library which offers it in e-form, and I am amazed that there is no line at whose end to wait as there is for The Year of the Flood which I might just have to purchase. It's not like dear Margaret Atwood can live enough longer to appreciate her royalties. I shouldn't feel so bad. Actually, I don't. She makes me mad now. Is a cautionary tale all that is on offer from our best minds?
I so want to offer hope, to see hope on offer, about how it is that humans are Earth's mouthpiece and not in voices, not in written words, in fulfillment of what was already always implicit. Still, those who cannot read will never know. Those who worship their own richness, their bodies, their foodist intake of ever more delightful essences. They can never see it coming anyhow. A writer wastes her breath.
But I know how to read. I can appreciate Atwood's prose which rehearses her project, to project consciousness of what it might mean to be human if only we could break free of venality, is that the word, or is it, also, extinct? As humans are as are all things natural, as Atwood has internalized, yes she has, masculine mankind and it does not leave her proud. Patriarch be gone!
These things will end, as has our entrancement by things perceptual which are all that we can control. It is our minds which conspire, through words, to make a thing conscious which has always been and ever. Relations in the mind alone and humans alone can run this thing - the mind - above the grey matter of their silly brains. Cocksure, I wish she would pay attention to what is going on among Mama Grizzlies! We men are slumbering still, living large and in charge of what is already that far beyond us.
In the beginning I really didn't think she was all that brilliant. As a writer. Now I know that she is, and I will read, with relish, the Year of the Flood. I will watch that story enacted all around me, understanding that not only human life, but all life can be snuffed out, to start again, by Mother Earth awakening and dancing careless of her methane farts alighted.
I understand, I undertake to understand that it is time we leaned to use our minds which would mean to loosen and not to assert control. To re-enter flood, the flow, the thing which makes its own road, path, Way. Lunatic undertow. Subversion. There is a way forward. Damn!
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