Today’s office is Salt Lake City Public Library.
I’m drinking coffee (of course) and reading Jamil Ahmad’s ‘The Wandering Falcon.’ The book’s setting – Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan – resembles somewhat the deserts of Southern Idaho and Utah, and the author’s dream-like story-becomes-story-becomes-story linkage fits the current mode of my brain, weary after such a long drive.
The story takes place in a harsh, unforgiving land in an unspecified time. The appearance late in the book of the wreckage of an airplane is jarring, adding to a sense of awe in the timelessness of the desert and in the largely unchanged lives of the nomadic tribes that inhabit it.
Reading ‘The Wandering Falcon’ is a fascinating journey, like observing a ritual from a distance. Though I often feel distant, even when watching an annual ritual I’ve observed over fifty times in the land where I grew up, it is rarely as enthralling a challenge as trying to wrap my brain around ‘The Wandering Falcon.’