Creative Writing Exercise, Part 2

A Borges1 scene written in the style of Hemingway:

Nick looked for his explanation. He reached into his pack and easily remembered. It felt good. Nick knew the answer. It is not complete. It is not untrue. The answer looked like a big picture of everything, just like Jenkins had said. Nick remembered Jenkins. It had been a long time since he had seen him. Jenkins was not like Bill and John. They said the answer was plain and ordinary. They said the answer was ordinary time. Nick didn’t believe them. He believed Jenkins. Jenkins believed in plenty of different times. Nick thought of the time he first met Jenkins. That was a long time ago on the Columbia River. Nick thought of what Jenkins had told him about the answer. The answer was full of different times. Some times were slow, some times were fast. Other times existed too, but Nick could not think of them. There were many times. They could curve or change into each other, or stop suddenly, never appearing again. Nick tried to think of all times, because that was the answer that Jenkins had told him. Jenkins had told Nick that he couldn’t be in all the times. He could be in one, and not the others. He could be in another one, without Jenkins. He could be in no times, without anybody. Nick was confused. Nick was tired. The answer was there.

1 Scene adapted from Jorge Luis Borges’ The Garden of Forking Paths, first published in 1941.