The extinction of meaning

The solitary writer dwells in an oppressive fear; that the line of culture, the traditions, the teachings that his labors seek to preserve against the decay of all human institutions, this thread of meaning, which he has painstakingly recovered from the past and braided with the personal traumas that inspire any writer, this way of being will not live beyond his death. Every solitary writer fears becoming the last of his kind, and after the arrogant brashness of youth, it is mourning for the imminent death of his words that keeps more words coming. I insist on these statements, with all their confusions and ambiguities, and I set the bier afloat on the current before shooting a flaming arrow to extinguish its last untouchable meaning. We know languages are disappearing from the world, but we cannot for long contemplate the flames in the libraries and the infinite profusion of novelties that together overwhelm any tradition’s attempt to preserve meaning. We utter our own unique death rites, and slide unnoticed into the infinitude of commentary.

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