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3 Unwritten Short Stories Still Haunting This Ex-Fiction Writer

This one harks back to when I lived in Jerusalem, which I left in 2006. The idea arose some years after that.

A man of 50, a professor—let’s say, of political science—at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is at last granted a long-cherished dream. A research institute in the city will allow him to work solely as a researcher, preparing and writing articles and books.

He’ll no longer have to engage in teaching, which he always regarded as a burden and a hindrance. He’ll have his own office, which looks out on a pleasant street in one of the better Jerusalem neighborhoods.

Yet, sitting in the office, he finds himself strangely immobile.

He looks at the blue-grey dusk outside the window and finds himself lost in it. He feels the silence of 50 years of life. Deep voices are saying he cannot just sit here, content, and write about his professional subjects. There are too many loose ends, there are shoals in his life he has to stop ignoring.