The Fall of THE Ivory Tower

It seems that he does not marry her because she is too smart.

There should not have been such an unjustified phrase as ‘too smart’, for one surely cannot simply be ‘too smart’ without taking any conditions into comparison. But in this case it is not that she is ‘smarter’ than him. It is not this particular condition that has been long in debate over the issues concerning sex and gender, not at all. In fact, he would not care if she would have been so. No, she is apparently so, in fact. He is always an admirer of smart women, and it will not have the least impact on him if one would like to regard him as a stupid man.

She, perhaps, is just too smart to live in reality where there are enough imbeciles.

Most of the time, she seems to be lost in the world of her own that only exists in her own mind. With that depth of her eyes, in which he indeed deeply cherishes, she seems to be somewhere so faraway from the hectic scene of the street created by the congregation of vehicles and the noisy pedestrians grumbling over the recent enforcement of tax laws.

Amid that physical and mental chaos of the day, she does not see what he sees. What she notices is the falling of those yellow tree leaves stirred by late November icy wind. With that depth of her eyes, she seems to be poeticising that natural change of seasons and discussing it with herself whether she would like William Wordsworth, Christina Rossetti or Ezra Pound to do it with her.

He does not exist there, you see…

And for a moment, she would probably think about Charles Baudelaire and abruptly switches to Arthur Schopenhauer. She would have been gone further and further through that long corridor, he supposes, leading to the great ivory tower, if he does not suddenly pull her body back in alarm at the crossroad where a mad driver is swiftly passing by in his tumbledown automobile. There, she would become conscious of the world around her again. She will smile a little sheepishly and, perhaps, continues her journey to the tower.

He does exist, sometimes, for her. For she seems to appreciate him listening to her lecture on the rising of nationalism and populism profoundly, but in fact he usually feels like she is conversing with herself rather than with him. Oh! There is a short moment he believes she actually addresses to him when she accidentally sweeps a glass of wine in front of her. The bloody liquid is spreading on the tablecloth when she utters, “my apologies! I’m really really sorry”.

Do you get now how she is too smart to be in reality?

It seems that he wants someone whom he could ‘exist’ with. Someone who can curse on her miserable being in this polluted city among those chatterboxes with him. Someone who will enjoy the taste of dinner and asks him constantly if he would like another glass of wine. Someone who will, later on, clean the dirty dishes with him, watch television with him and go to bed with him. It is not, again, that she has never done these things, but he just wants it to be, perhaps, with more real life.

He loves her dearly, but it seems that he cannot marry her.

On her side, she would get lost in her thoughts debating over possible reasons why he leaves her, but how unfortunate she was, for even that moment when she realises that her own scholarly knowledge cannot contribute to her daily life in this world — that moment of epiphany she does not yet seem to be able to get out of her mind and lives in reality. Worst , she even finds herself locked in that world of her own.


Suggested soundtrack: Adagio for Strings by Samuel Barber