I can’t ask you questions about the past anymore because you are gone. You were always so much better at remembering the past than I. You didn’t inspire fear, you inspired love. There was a joy in living that cannot be duplicated. When we try to make something that is true and lasting, we discover that which is artificial. I remember Herman standing in the middle of the street with his pants around his ankles as he jacked-off in front of everybody. He was a victim of a struggle which takes place in the theater of his mind. He had purchased his ticket for entry, but was denied entrance. Herman wants a faithful woman. He looks for her on the internet. He hopes that he can have her shipped to his front door, because he is afraid of stepping outside. Herman is hoping to find a monastery in Tibet to begin his spiritual life. He didn’t understand the cold-bloodedness that a war required. Still he would breathe in the toxic fumes of the clouds. He would fight with the stray dogs for the scraps of meat. He is as naked as a savage howling at the moon. Herman needs the earth like we need the sky. Trish was the one that convinced us to move to Southern Illinois. Herman was going to go to school there studying geography or philosophy. Herman built a deprivation chamber in the basement of an old house we rented. We would smoke pot and then float in the darkness. Herman was keeping a journal of the thoughts that came to him in the chamber. In the garage he would hang balls on different lengths of string and would kick and hit them in a pseudo-karate workout. One evening over white wine, Trish told Herman and I about her experiences in Southern Illinois. I always listened to her very intently. I cherished every word that came from her mouth. Her words could paint a picture in my mind that no one else could. She was studying lesbian pornography. She was planning on majoring in it. I lost her somewhere on the hill between the pizza place and the Chinese restaurant. I guess she wandered for days before she found her way home. She was living with a sociology professor who was getting a divorce. They ate vegetables together and practiced white magic. After a year, the professor left Trish for some whore in Cincinnati. Trish moved in with David the Bell Weather and they had three kids together.