Friday, 21 September 2012

Von fremden Ländern und Menschen


It is what it isn't. She took the fork from her plate and made a stabbing motion. It was going to be a lunch like that. We were on the second martini - the second location as in where you must not allow your kidnappers to take you. We were eating cheese with no bread which assured us of our superiority to most of the room. We had received our marching orders earlier but had failed to follow them. We were to go to the big, boxy building with the vents and wait to be filmed. But we couldn’t wait this time, we wanted our long boozy lunch when we wanted it. Mary Jo’s veneers were begging to pop out and my body was stiffening by the minute. We isn’t young. Mary Jo IS still angry about the trip to St Martin when we drowned her husband in the pool. He isn’t what he is, no more. We didn’t mean to do it, it was a cure that didn’t work. I’ve been dreaming about pelicans lately like that nutter St. Gertrude. In the last dream, one was flying pink over the moon and I said “Look MJ, the world can be so beautiful.” I miss going to church.

what I miss is missing. missing has such lovely cheeks, all perfect

I hate turning this corner because I know I'm going to get grief

A year later and Estrella had learnt to drive in her sleep. She was somewhere near Texas when the ‘phone rang in a hotel room near Bordeaux. “We need help naming a newly discovered antelope.” It was a rainy morning and from the steps of the art gallery the city snuggled into a damp coat and sneezed. “Hi Bryony” the voice continued, “Professor Doktor here.” Estrella was dreaming of a snowy seascape, with lowering clouds punching the waves. Texas is a homely kind of a place, everyone knows everyone’s business. He took a strip of painkillers from their box. Then began to smash the windows with his fists. “You got a license for that?” asked Cynthia. She was going deep sea diving later, this was a year earlier. Those spooky photographs of Victorian séances.

A year to the day and Estrella was waiting in a hotel lobby in Dortmund for Jack to show up with the magic amulet. Nervously she read instructions for operating the 1920s lift in a Bucharest hotel. There was a conference going on, for patients of psychiatrists-specialising-in-psychosomatic-religious-mania. Jack came in shivering. He’d caught ‘flu waiting in the rain on the steps of the art gallery. Mozart started to sing like a bird up in the hammer beam roof of a country church. It was a hot and dry day in Karachi until they switched channels on TV. Estrella pulled back the hood of her cape. We all gasped to see how beautiful were her disfigurements. Alison gently placed her lips against one of the scars and began to duet with Mozart: “Mann und Weib und Weib und Mann / Reichen an die Gottheit an.”

The structure of baroque theatrical representation is essentially a destructuring of the essential to create an allegory of the inessential as ethical praxis. Estrella and Chloë made love as sunrise caused all the antelopes to break cover and run for the shelter of a municipal swimming baths. Jack picked the amulet up off the lobby floor. There were sleeping bellboys everywhere. Conscientiously Jack photographed each one of them in left profile before stuffing their mouths with flyers for a religious meeting and writing on the backs of their coats in chalk “don’t forget to write to your sisters.” All of the previous is taken from a text by Nietzsche. So it was that by October Estrella found herself in Wayland, Massachusetts, a town “committed to delivering the highest quality municipal services in a fiscally responsible and an operationally responsive manner to the citizen-customers that it serves.” She’d not bathed in months and the deep gashes in her forehead had healed so that now she was more beautiful than any swan in a cartoon.

Desmond made the almost same drawing thousands of times, each time with a different name for God in miniscule characters dead centre of the image of a tower block in a thunder storm. People feared Desmond and gave him food and drink to ensure he continued making his images. A thousand strong orchestra played in the underground / subway / Métro. Citizen-customers in Wayland, Massachusetts were unaware of this. Jack pushed open the doors of the pub and approached the bar his damp coat steaming in the heat of the place. He asked for a pint and a double whisky and paid with the money Sasha had given him for the photographs of Victorian séances. He drank his beer quickly, then the scotch and reordered the same. Then he walked away from the bar but there were no tables free, so he made his way back there and stood squeezed into a corner. The man behind the bar seemed to have painted lips, but that was only the lighting and the lightning outside and Jack’s desire. I was beautiful once. I loved my own body the way a painter loves how all reality is abstract. And if you are enjoying this piece of writing why not tell your friends about it?

MJ is a artisan when it comes to lying. Her lies are perfect crystal boxes, prismatic and dazzling. They reflect so much falsehood, that they become a truth in themselves. Except they isn't the truth. But this is partly why I tolerate her, I love to see the rainbow trails come from her mouth as she lies with such purity. We are drunk now. We've stumbled down the street to find neighbor Azalea smoking on her porch with her non sleeping baby wailing away in the pram next to her. "We'll take the baby for a stroll while we go to buy a lottery ticket", says MJ. Azalea nods bleakly and we push Baby Millie to the liquor store where we get two Bottle of Prosecco and an extra lottery ticket for Millie. It's a beautiful moment, caught on film, unfortunately. The producers caught up to us.

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