Beasts and Beauties of the Moment

A damaged man assesses a damaged woman:

Now, in the morning, seeing her in front of him, proud and nervous, it was difficult to see her alcoholism as anything other than a recurring wound which would open and bleed unpredictably, but just as surely heal again. That the Astrid he had loved was real, yet not a fully able human; if any were fully able. The terms had changed. It was no longer a question of whether he was looking at an alcoholic disguised as Astrid, or Astrid carrying a drinker’s scars. Now the question could only be who Kellas was – the Kellas who had been repelled by the drunken Astrid, or the Kellas who could barely see the marks that the drinking had made in the sober women of Wednesday; or a Kellas who understood that both Astrid and himself were to be perceived not as the beasts and beauties of this or that moment, but as the long, twisting shapes they carved in time as they flowed through it.

From We Are Now Beginning Our Descent, by James Meek (published 2008).

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Published in: on June 14, 2010 at 1:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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