Since when did Mathematics have all the answers
We were told there would be aluminum cages right over our heads. As if we were standing in a well-lit room, at a museum, with just the tiniest figurine of a cage attached to the ceiling, except there’s no ceiling. It’s the sky. And you have no idea how the cage is being lowered. Remember when the millennium was this thing that we referred to in the future tense? How it seemed like so much was going to happen before it was here? And then we were in it. And that’s all they could talk about on the radio advertisements. The cages started out, and we didn’t really think about them. Then we finally saw them, and they looked like les boucles d’oreilles so high over our heads. A handful of syllables, charming, when you can say it in French. At that point, we knew they were getting closer, and we had nowhere else left to go. Nothing is supposed to be easy. Dinner. Breakfast. Taking a phone call from your aunt. This was the summer that felt like that flat stretch of highway leading out of a Midwestern town. With fields of mown grass. And winds. And our houses. And the only day you can remember happening was Wednesday. A grown man learns to take measurements of a cage when it’s being lowered over his head. Such is the advice of my Father. And other mathematicians as well. To calculate is to logic. To prove an inside to things. There are many dimensions of an inside. Like getting trapped inside one of those long math equations. Try when you’re calculating air to keep breathing. Try to make sense of an innumerable height. My Father was a mathematician. And he was a man who dwelt with despair. Mathematics, mathematics. Let my People Go! There is a pressure to water calculated by the depth of the water being held over it. Nothing is meant to be easy. Something was lowering the cages from somewhere. What am I supposed to be hoping for anymore?