There’s this recurring character who appears in my stories. He’s not of one fixed identity; she can be another. Together, they build and destroy, damage and revive memories under a chain-linked arbor of narrative. I’ve called him Simon, her name has been Mary. They’ve both meant the same to me: an undisturbed arc of life after death.
She said that there is nothing funny about tragedy, and I said, “You forget about irony; if I were to read the paper one morning and see that a water park caught fire and burned to the ground, I would take my next sip of coffee with a smirk and nod to our indifferent universe. From there I would flatten my lips and ask my personal god for a reason. My personal god wouldn’t answer me. This is the causal loop where tragedy and comedy become one. Where the silence is deafening and the water park is no more.”
“So it’s funny because it’s a water park?”
“Basically, yes,” I said to her, “on fire.”