I said, "Wait. Stop. Something´s wrong"
What it was, was unknown, but it was intense and I didn´t want it to continue. It was a really frightening thing, which has since become clearer. It was the larger pattern of Chris, making itself known at at last. We reversed our decision, and now realize what a catastrophe it would have been for us if we hadn´t.
So I guess you could say, in this primitive way of looking at things, that Chris got his airplane ticket after all. This time he is a little girl named Nell and our life is back in perspective again. The hole in the pattern is being mended. Athousand memories of Chris will allways be at hand, of course, but not a destructive clinging to some material entity that can never be here again.
Nell teaches aspects of parenthood never understood before. If she cries or makes a mess or decides to be the contrary (and these are relatively rare), it doesn´t bother. There is always Chris´s silence to compare to it to. What is seen now so much more clearly is that although the names keep changing, the larger pattern that holds us all together goes on and on.
In terms of this larger pattern the lines at the end of this book still stand. We "have" won it. Things "are" better now. You can sort of tell these things.
(This last line is by Nell. She reached around the corner of the machine and banged on the keys and then watched with just the same gleam Chris used to have. If the editors preserve it, it will be her first published work.)
Robert M. Pirsig
Gothenburg, Sweden 1984
- 25th Anniversary Edition of "Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintainance".