Friday, 26 February 2010

3. 1871, she was outside a poem last week

om mani padme hum. There’s something glamorous in my inability to read these words, or so I think.
It’s like the time Anne-Marie checked out of a hotel somewhere leaving her sunglasses behind.
Shortly afterwards came a series of phantom kidnappings somewhere else.
How do you kidnap a phantom?
I don’t know, how do you kidnap a phantom?
When they found Josephine she was living rough, discoursing with angels.
I like it here.
I like the days when the sea is uneasy & eagles blow in on the blast & bite out my eyes.
I keep replacement eyes in this cabinet made by Harry Godwin.
OK, don’t be so unhappy.
Look at the beautiful way the meadows bend into the telephone call, make that sighing noise.
The noise she used to make when she burnt the backs of her hands with cigarettes.
I’ve got a postcard Otto sent me last year.
“Hello,” he says, “how you doing?”
“I’ve not thought of you for years.”
“Who are you?”
But that’s why aesthetics has its part to play in the War on Terror.
Watch your back & don’t ever look back.
They may be statues, but they ooze 100% genuine blood.
The tour is drawing to its conclusion.
We dawdle over obituaries

discuss who died
whilst eating kedgeree.

When the total eclipse came
we were drinking champagne on the balcony.
You wore the dress of rare butterfly fabric.

Tomorrow is Wednesday
& the menu might change
so you make a hair appointment
and we must leave.

In the harbour the yachts turn with the tide.
We haven’t bought any presents or sent postcards.

The press wanted to speak to you.
I feigned an epileptic fit.
You shouted at the waiter
who made the sign of the cross

it was almost checkmate.

Everywhere is closed
we can not get what we want.

Battleship grey
the footprints in the hall

they all add up.

I notice your handbag

the mystery of birth

the red dress

the fog of war


Queen Mary docking in New York

the photograph of a child.

This is not the road to the ferry
but Oberammergau.

I still remember you smiling over the dinner table in candle light

It is spring
so we discussed books, listened to music

yoga, origami
we painted our nails pearlescent

and the singing was fabulous. fine. coral like

then your graceful bow.

My hand comes up to the bridge of my nose with the thought of Mahler, Veronika and moths.
Rennecke huffs loudly as she is trying to pin the sleeve.
They are butterfly sleeves.
Veronika sent a dead butterfly to Joe’s wife in a pearly envelope – such lovely paper.
I have to hand it to her for subtlety.

Butterflies are Hera’s spies.
I was never subtle.
I met Joe in the café outside the opera house every morning while his wife was home suffering and pointedly ordered divorce pastries.

He was amused. He has always loved attention. I remember talking about the story of Paris and the Apple with Susan. She said, “ you’re an Aphrodite so watch out”. And it’s true. I like parties and pastries and lying around. And men love me, I can’t help this. I remember walking Heinrich Heine Allee im wunderschönen Monat Mai thinking about Joe, thinking about Otto, thinking about potatoes but mostly Joe. I thought nothing of the truck driving by until the half chewed apple core came flying out of the half open window of the passenger’s side hitting me clean in the forehead. Have to hand it to Hera for her subtlety.

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