The fear | Guy Verville
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The fear

I went to my singing lesson last night under a calm, slightly overcast sky. It was already dusk. It’s not summer yet, more like winter and fear.

Since Friday, my company’s employees have been assigned to work from home. The subway trains look like hungry snakes; we don’t know if what crawls into their bellies are victims, reckless people, or just ordinary citizens struggling with their lonely destiny.

Fear is felt. A few masked persons look before them like lifeless, salty statues. As the new subway trains are without walls, the air coming from the head is raking in a full sweep. What we breathe may be poisoned, there’s nothing to check the soup of bacteria hitting us in the face.

I have to walk fifteen minutes out of the station to get to my teacher’s residence. Again, not many people. The trees are left to their own devices, not having to fear the evil that eats away at the human race. We don’t necessarily feel more comfortable in their company because our fate is in the hands of inescapable planetary cycles. Saturn and Pluto, in their palimpsest dance, are still tapping our fingers. When it is not war, dictatorships or Trump, they sprinkle us every thirty, thirty-five years with a plague that forces us to review our youthful optimism as if Mother Nature and the Universe were regulating their too unstable inventions in their own way.

Life seems to be a laboratory where the more chaotic experiments of one another threaten to blow away the walls.

We are afraid as soon as we are born, and we forget this all too quickly. The present anxiety, heightened tenfold by loudspeakers that have become technologically gigantic, is thus nothing new. We rush around on toilet paper as if we wanted to hide the fact that our panties are already soiled with fear.

I sang Buxtehude. A beautiful piece, but difficult to render when you have to do it at the right tempo. Curious, though, that it is so beautiful both in slow motion and at full speed. Perhaps that’s where the genius lies. Life and death are the same things. It depends on the speed of the gaze and our attitudes.

Back home, there was an e-mail from my teacher who told all his students that it would be better to finally postpone classes until calm is restored. It’s time for confinement and simple gestures, for mutual help. Sometimes the days are as unpredictable as a dream walking the tightrope between enchantment and nightmare.

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