Jono Schneider

This moment, drenched in repetition, continued to sound like a machine content with its own operation. And I wrote against it because I was determined to follow the moment exclusively until I punched through it, until the moment could only leave repetition behind, until the machine was teaching itself how to operate.

Because he was continually flashing violent signs, I had held myself away from him. But the strategy of his violence was to camouflage the emptiness enfolding him

I began to travel in the realms of physiology, and my writings reflected a continuous concern with a thinking attached to the body.

The possibility of the novel is such that the innovation remains at the level of character. But the character is not "who" the novel is -- the character is how the novel matters, and the language they speak applies to their missteps in the world, that the world they write is the language that signifies the limits they endure.

My room was lined with windows, and the silence of the outside world was soon inextricable from the silence with which I surrounded myself when I remained inside. But she did not know how truly deafening it was for me while I waited.

I was catching up with myself by returning, but only as long as I knew I was returning.

We targeted the next day with our actions, and our virtuosity, as followers, was revealed through those actions, but not because of the day.

I knew that the answer lay somewhere within the repetitions I was propagating and promoting. Each action within the repetition was a figure of a previous incarnation, representing an origin -- and a trail to the origin -- as if repeating myself were a kind of incantation, where I summoned what I had first experienced.

If it were a novel, the writing might have contained other language, but it may have also continued to hold back from description in order to show that description belonged to the order of the world, whereas this novel sought to reveal the law of writing.

He was idle, but then he was lethal without knowing where the toxicity began. And there were two sections overlaid atop each other, which, when he remained idle, he could initially separate for himself. Yet he needed more than himself.

Her head towered over me, and all my language was lost -- but I do not do this as long as I continue to write. And my hands extend out into words, where I learn what I mind, and I wait for myself to return among these same words.

The image I had attached to the moment did not wait for me: it was impatient with the longing I felt for it and continued to elude me -- the difference between the moment and the image was what separated the act from fulfilling me. But I noticed that, as long as the image attained the status of a filmed instant (a framed object) inside me, I could continue to return to it and the hope that its repetition would bear a further outcome, where change signified a perfect acceptance. The tone of this conclusion was the same atmosphere surrounding the image.

I proclaimed the silence as purely accurate. I reacted to the wholeness of her distance. Time stretched itself out before me in an open field, and I filled it with a silence that I did not enter but which hovered just above me, a simulation of what I waited for her to say.

To protect what was dying in me, she fled. And it continued to die, but not enough to be extinguished, for her flight promised something -- a slight seduction, a possible provocation -- that allowed me to hope I could expand into the soft figure of a silhouette.

Suddenly scarcity seemed to grow and touch the sky, where I had been waiting to be released into a distance I could understand. This happened at the very center of the poem I had decided I could not write.

I considered a project like this devilish in that I wanted to bring things down from the heights, to take words and drop them to the floor, dancing over them, wringing the crisis completely out of them. But I was trying to do this as a means of accessing what was inside them, where light continued to burst forth, through further words, against what had previously been silenced.

It seems that it is the present that I make most easily. I look up and I see what is in front of me before I notice that I am seeing what I have always seen, that I am burdening the present with an image that does not belong to it, that I, at that moment, do not belong to the present, but I have made it captive of what did not originate with me.

Someone had named writing as the search for the good among language. But if language began with the desire to name something, to distinguish it among a context that included others, the good already existed within language, for real distinguishing requires the rigor of communication. But then, good writing laid the focus back upon the appearance of language -- laying itself out as a distinguishing feature as form itself. Yet I remained autobiographical because the form I wanted to take brought me back towards myself and what I was seeking through speech.

We were waiting to be spoken to, even if what was being said to us insulted us, as we were not sure that anything had ever been said, and we began to doubt first the truth and then the function of words altogether. So I looked at her and asked her to speak again more slowly. When I heard the invectives, I imagined their meanings to be the opposite, and I smiled, and I was soothed.

He did not want me to touch him, but he did not want me to go untouched.

That question warned me with its form, which led to the exasperation of having to answer something that could only be an indictment of the very thing I was readying myself to say.

The silence of the sky so distressed me that I could not notice how still the night had become with the rain ending in an immobility I called "message."

These occasions invigorated flowery and ornamental speech, which, in turn, recast the invasive events as delicacies, as if there were no actions but instants in which things ended all action and remained silent, perfect in being silenced by these words.

I heard them arguing about how much I had cost them. I later mastered the art of counting, and then I saw that the amount over which they had been arguing was much smaller than what I needed to survive. I learned the kinds of tricks that altered me enough to earn the meaning of this scene.

I reached a point in my thinking where everything became simple -- objects were objects with names because names were needed to distinguish things in speech -- but the limits were no longer prescribed, as if I had transcribed a previously secret language to myself and, upon reading it, learned that the language was made up entirely of propositions.

You were wishing for something. You struck out at the air around you. I picked up the shiny object beside me and waved it in front of you. You clapped your hands together. You intended your movements as happiness.

I spoke the name of the thing to evoke it, but the evocation was within me, as the thing did not know that I had called it by name, as the name of the thing applied to my need to recognize the thing and the function it had for me, not to the thing's awareness of itself, as the thing had no awareness, but it remained pure function -- the obligatory product of fiction.

The finest hour of psychology was now upon me. Everything I found myself doing and saying resulted in my ability to trace its origin within the first few moments I saw her face, when she did not use those words.

We are tied together by a desire we pretend not to understand because the convenience of this fantasy is the very origin of this same desire, and to lose the fantasy is to consciously misplace the energy we use to prolong our lives.

The force that a narrator uses to turn history into a pure voice that speaks without telling is a result of prose's claustrophobia, which packs words tightly into paragraphs as a means of stripping the page of space and time.

She reacted as though this moment were an acute trauma, that she had lost something that she could not find and would never locate, and she looked to me to be responsible for the solution. But I sat back and whittled my aggression. I knew that this same urgency would repeat itself for her in minutes -- and then again.

I thought of the past as a series of words on pages, a book whose writing weighed against all the air coming in through the open window, and the room that surrounded me was in need of a clearing, the very thing I was writing at that moment, when the door suddenly began to open.

What prompts me is the very thing that moves against me, so I must move in accordance with it and learn its every action. Then I will be able to move against it in turn by moving through it, watching as it moves away from me, until I am no longer moving, but waiting for nothing, acting with myself.

Objects and people are interchangeable in literary space because both are reduced to the material fact of being words and nothing more than words. Writing is the very thing a storyteller uses to introduce narrative only at the level of language, where history bears out the traces of the people who live through it. History brings language forth, into physical existence, as though time is an object.

If I feel silence, I am the person who is becoming ready to speak, to let words arise from the actions they proliferate -- yet I do not fall into silence because I want to speak as a way of giving back to silence the jurisdiction of the next word.

The speed of a sentence is carried by the weight of its subject; the subject is the speed of its action as writing; writing is the action of a subject pulled along by the weight of its performance.

I know that a moment will come when I will have to do something instantaneous, an action that cannot last any longer than itself, and the decision to act will be contained by the action (inseparable from it). I will only be able to see the decision once the action has ended, when, because "acting" is no longer "happening", everything is, only at this point, known to me as something that has ceased, that is mute.

Because everything was silent outside of them, the clouds seemed to hold that very silence within them -- as if I were about to say that the silence began with them and radiated outward.