Roundel with reminder of death (North Netherlandish, 1515) at the Cloisters, New York City

Woke with a yelp from a tense dream of standing on a Russian coastline while pieces of my life washed onto the shore. Will I ever believe in god? If so, it will probably begin in my dreams. The first gods must have been born while we slept. How else could our ancestors explain the fantastic scenes that unfolded in their heads each night? God was little more than a ghost in the machinery of the subconscious before gradually being refined into a spirit, a concept, and finally, an animating force with ethical qualities. I often think about this phrase from Herbert Spencer: “God was, at first, only a permanently existing ghost.”

A haunted-looking priest stops in the middle of the sidewalk, staring at an advertisement for a career in nursing. “Maybe only 75% of my life was a disaster,” says a woman on the corner. “I don’t know, I never weighed it on a scale.”

Burial – Ghost Hardware

From Untrue | Hyperdub, 2007 | More

An appropriate song from a perfect album that still haunts today. See also: Herbert Spencer.

Each night in 2020, I wrote a short post for a series called Notes From the End of a World because I wanted to etch these days into my memory. Before the world changed completely.
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