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B3: What We Talk about When We Talk about Killing


ime has been returned to me without my asking for

it. Absolute Love is hard work; it absorbs a lot of

time, a lot of energy. I had mirrored my time to his.

My schedules to his. My age to his. And I was all too happy

to do so. Ever since I was little I’ve been afraid of having too

much time on my hands, but this has never happened in

the last sixteen years. Because I added his activities to mine:

Even if I wasn’t the protagonist of his, even though he was

living them and not me, I was there; I was always there. If

someone were to ask me what I was doing, where I was, for

instance, on the day the World Trade Center collapsed, I

couldn’t tell you for sure. But ask me where he was, and I

know exactly where and with whom. When we were apart

for a few hours, my mind always accompanied him. And

when we were together, his inner climate—his every smile,

his every sign of irritation, his every new dish, his every

emotion—regulated my mood. In a word, to be left

suddenly without an occupation of this import clearly

transforms the time that lies ahead into an interminable


So much for time. As for space: on arriving in town after

being gone since Friday, I experience an unsettling feeling.

Have you ever had the impression that everything around

you is a set, a fake landscape, a stage identical to the

familiar one, yet absolutely strange and never seen before?