I told her that they felt like steel girders, like in a railrway bridge over a road. I had a vision of a railway bridge in a dark corner of a city, supported on either side by large stones and masonry, and void in the middle.
The topic came up about that middle--the heart--that one might ordinarily think of as a living center and source of vitality: where was it?
Evidently it was in hiding, flickering in and out of awareness.
Last night I went to a concert on campus. It was a faculty showcase concert, featuring our new faculty members. I had been to many concerts before, but this time I felt nothing. I watched the performers on stage (and saw ego), and I saw members of the audience responding with the standard gestures (applause, standing ovations for everything). I participated rather lamely in those gestures, but I was mainly watching what was going on around me and remarking that I felt nothing of my own inside of me.
As I was driving home I began to wonder if the part of me that had been so attached to classical music since I was a child was finally giving way. Perhaps sometimes we die to aspects of ourselves while still maintaining a social role that implies that we are still involved with those things. Marriages sometimes turn into shells of their former selves. Why not careers?