From a letter to a friend living in New York City, written on New Year’s Day, 2001.
It’s New Year’s Day. Happy New Year, pal. Last night I sat down at my desk with the Bible and read Revelation. I think the Babylon John talks about is New York. The false idols, spices, fine linens, mountains, and money burn up and smolder forever and ever, amen. And woe to the merchants and fornicators who were seduced by the whore that is Babylon. I wish I could tell you to get out of there. But it’s not my place. . . .
Wormwood. A third of the water will become wormwood. Men will drink it. It will be foul, and a third of men will die. I read somewhere that “Chernobyl” means “wormwood.” Don’t know if that’s accurate. . . . Then the fire. Then the flood. New York is going to reek of death for centuries. Get out. . . unless you’re sure of things. That sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Only if these predictions are wrong. Have I reached the point of babbling? Are you waiting for death to happen to you? Are you trying to kill yourself?
It’s all around me. The scent of destruction. People are just begging for it.