Citing Aquinas’ judgement that the body, once it is united with its soul, will be
closer to perfection than without, and that nearness to perfection will assure one
(body and soul) not only of more pleasure but also of more pain, the End of Never
predicted the sky would be no limit. This setting will be nothing like that of a
casino at Las Vegas, where gambling is essentially a requirement of the house,
where every stake is intended as the first step of a journey its proprietors hope
Father Antoine was a clown in the circus before becoming a priest at Saint Mark’s,
Oh Venice! Oh Florence! Oh Geneva! Oh Rome! Oh Paris! Oh Villasimius! Oh Venice!
will never end. The sky is the limit. Certain Africans think not even the sky is
a limit. They believe that every man in Africa, native born, who wills it has a
double, and that a father in Africa can meet his son in Paris, for example, and
talk with him and be assured by him, as long as he doesn’t touch him; for his feet
are still planted in Africa—and never leave the dark, light interior of Africa—
this in the blink of what largely constitutes a sunset as it segues into dusk.
Columbus saw no evil, heard no evil, spoke no evil—but gold. One has to believe
that if he had been offered the Touch of Midas, he would have accepted it. He
didn’t hear the song of the nightingale he wrote of ad nauseam; he heard gold. He
didn’t sense that Andalusian April in September he wrote of; he sensed gold. He
didn’t find, and wonder at, blacks where blacks were to be found but the prospect
of gold they presented, gold that followed like shadows. In the sea he looked for
nothing more than signs of the nearness of land, the presence of gold. Anything
that was purely informational had no meaning for him, no lure for him like gold.