Paris Letters #43

Rutger Hauer in Blade Runner

There are signs here of an extinct civilisation — echoes of a lost continent — which can be felt here. It has even been rumoured that human beings once lived in Paris. Their presence be felt on certain spring days, when walking down the River Seine in Paris, when the heart becomes suddenly full of longing and pathos.

What happened to these humans? Well, we don’t know for sure the nature of the virus, which first rendered them subhuman. It has been called by some historians, for lack of a better term: ‘Amoeba concepts’. Amoeba concepts are vague notions which replace concrete realities, and which attack and blur the brain. The net effect of the illness is to replace ‘soul’ with simulacrum, or ‘products’ and ‘machines’’. Other symptoms include an acute sense of separation, and a terror of sex and death.

Though some traces of humanity are still present in everyone, most cannot access this. The average person is instead plugged in technological appendages, which send out ‘subhuman messages’ to their brains, and render keep them dazed and semi-conscious. These appendices are actually ‘virtual prisons’ for souls. When plugged into these magic boxes, it is virtually impossible for any traces of their humanity to be activated, as the boxes provide substitute emotions and lives, and keep us far from the the living waters. Through this, and other demonic means, the average one remains, perpetually ignorant of his or her origin and potential.

Furthermore, these creatures, also known as cyphers or replicants, become hysterical if a true human being actually emerges. In this society, real humans are persecuted, tortured, scapegoated, or just ignored — and occasionally crucified or martyred. Often they are even worshiped, out of nostalgia for some world that has mostly been forgotten, but only after they have been sacrificed for something called the ‘common good’.

However, despite this grim pictures, I have found evidence for a real human creature in a fossil I found Montmartre — which stands on the highest point of Paris, and which was once surrounded by water. On that fossil was engraved a fine silver webbed hand. Apparently, these human once loved to swim and run and use their limbs in all kinds of ways. They even developed webbed fingers for water navigation, and some say they even had actual wings to fly.

The remnants appear to have mostly have forgotten those limbs, and chooses instead to be shuffled around in various machines, like cars and trains. Sometimes they write stories into computers, nostalgic for the time when humans walked the earth.

And this, this dear reader is what I do now, for I have discovered that I was once human. I now live in this inbetween space, not really a replicant, nor a human. The memories come back slowly but with increasing clarity. My job now is to put together the broken fragments of that lost human, at least in memory. I write from an abandoned post, in a barren and desolate land, full of storms and terrors. I wonder if anyone out there is listening.

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