When he found it, it appeared to be just like all the other battered and secretly self-referential journals he'd produced over the years; but unlike all the others, with their flow of words across every page, block black letters printed row upon row in a dozen or so volumes, this one contained only words that appeared, perhaps randomly, on the sides of buildings, or on the spine of some book he'd drawn, or on a signpost outside the inkimaginary village, captured in detail from some impossible vantage point suspended in the sky.
Some of the drawings might have been produced with a brush and a fine wash of ink, but it was clear that most of them had been done using only a pen. Meticulous gradations, crosshatched and stippled, raised and receded surfacees from each page so deftly that his hand--and the hands of those to whom he showed the volume--invariably swept across the image, unable to resist the urge to verify that, indeed, it was only ink on a page, and not the subject itself, miniaturized, set down whole upon the paper.
He marveled, and everyone marveled, at his own forgotten work. He only vaguely recalled having made some of the drawings, and could not remember when he had given it up, leaving the journal half-filled.
When he awoke, he could recall only a filagree and a slouch hat, the words, "Eggs And Freedom" on the side of an old barnboard shack, and a set of pilings near a long-dry riverbank; but he knew it had been his work and, when he sat up in bed for the first time that he could remember, he thought about not going to his keyboard while the sun was still rising and the coffee not yet brewed.