Heidegger’s Soul

by Alex Epstein

Winter is a city, and in this city Martin Heidegger is dreaming something like this: And old Gypsy woman is harassing him on the street, next to a house with an even-numbered address. And yes, she wants to ask him a riddle. In Heidegger’s dream he walks out of an office-supply store with a conical paperweight while the old woman is dragging a sack of something swaying back and forth and perhaps breathing—in his heart Heidegger guesses correctly: these aren’t books. The old woman asks Heidegger if she should wait while he nears a solution. Heidegger, who is uncomfortable being seen in such company in public, and is dumbfounded that anyone let her wander around like this in the middle of the city, hurriedly points with the cone in his hands to a torn piece of cloud being dragged on the edge of a fleet of broad clouds in the sky. He declares that this torn piece of cloud, this and no other, is his soul. The old Gypsy shrugs and says that this is not the riddle. She rests the sack on the sidewalk and rummages inside. Heidegger wakes covered in sweat. From every direction air raid sirens wail.

From Lunar Savings Time, Clockroot Books. From the Hebrew: Becka Mara McKay.