On the Segue

‘Segue’ is originally a musical term, denoting what follows a note or a movement. It’s a hint at what is coming, an anticipatory inflection of the present: like the darkening of the horizon on a sweltering day.

Or it could just be a darkening of the horizon.

In the last five drawing rooms I have been in, the topic of conversation has been the resurgence of the right. Those of us who are left of center, for want of a better way to describe ourselves, cannot but feel what seems like a weird thrill, that we are living this segue. Our words have, more than usual, gained the character of portents. At home and abroad, we are talking about this moment that has never been so much about the future. We are talking incessantly. We are excited that maybe we had understood history correctly, and maybe we are going to be proved right by the thing that crushes us. Or maybe we are going to prevail. Maybe our wealth is in our dread, in our premonition, in the fact that we are the grim faces who are ruining parties around the world.

The segue is even more inexorable than the thing that follows.

The truck leaps over the ravine.

2016 AQ- 164 misses the earth by 104, 400 km.

“After many a summer dies the swan”.

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