A thwarted desire or a deadline expiring

Another reason I don’t tell the story is because tourists don’t want to hear things like that. They enjoy tales of farmers pulling people out of the ground and bakeries being destroyed. I’d like to show them the birthmark spreading over my ribs when they ask for directions to the hole. I’d like to explain where a hole lives, how it can fit under a fingernail or inside a word. If I were making the recording for the kiosk, I would have it say a hole is something you give to someone you love, and a hole is a pear, and a hole is the bruise you got while playing kickball in the fifth grade until everyone understood. But the truth is that people can’t believe as easily in a hole as they do in lime phosphate.

Tina May Hall, “How to Remember a Bird,” The Physics of Imaginary Objects (University of Pittsburgh Press).