inspiration #18 : palmistry.

by s.m.


I have a story about this, and it struck me the other day that it fits well (pending fictional interpretation) into this book.  As rational and capricornal as I believe myself to be, I put a fair amount of stock in the occult (I attribute this to my childhood love of Zilpha Keatley Snyder novels like The Egypt Game and my personal favorite, The Headless Cupid).

So imagine the scene: a balmy late-summer evening in Europe.  Copious amounts of good red wine.  A colleague mentions she knows how to read palms.  I give her my hand and by tea-light candle she tells me my future.  The most fascinating part is when she tells me I’m not going to marry for another ten years, so the next day I promptly run out and begin a series of affairs.  I walk away from the so-called “love of my life” because the time is a gift.  I’m ages away from needing to make so serious a decision.

I’m interested in what it is about the framing of something as a fortune, whether it’s through a palm reading, tarot cards, or some other form of divination, that causes people to see their lives differently.  What is it about hearing that I have ten years of freedom that causes me to take advantage of it?  In terms of advancing the plot, it’s quite powerful.

Heads up, reader.  There’s a palm-reading scene coming up.  And all of the attendant ambivalence, as well.