To The Silent Era (fortieth letter)

Each of your frames is like a brittle, undead husk, reanimated by the projector’s light and motion.  It’s as if they whistle and crack through the air and only the void inside me hears it.  You’ve never explained this, no matter how much I’ve wanted you to, no matter how carefully I’ve surveyed your terrain.  Can I bring this unknowableness back to wherever it came from?  Was it yours to begin with?  There’s no address, no map, no legend, no way back.  Back to where?  Your flickering shadows are exiles too, always reforming within the shifting, disparate memories and nostalgic longings of the moment.
Do I see myself on screen, or perhaps everything that I think I must already know?  Is all else invisible, silent?  Do I see an impossibility to access the past, of saving the present from erasure?  The quiet is illusory.  What some call silence might be the sound of an ongoing apocalypse.
Your fragments reanimate me (as the projector does for them).  Perhaps we are all undead, indications, symptoms, accumulating remnants, bits and pieces that are forever reinterpreted, soliciting projections, desires to reconstruct something, anything.  I’m activated despite my passive spectatorship.  I move through associations always beyond my control, teaching or communicability.  It’s my struggle and pleasure.  I own this.  You’ve given it to me and will always give me more.
This is another of the many reasons why the talkies will never replace you. 

 

jeremy