Saturday, May 02, 2009

Novela de Rinconete y Cortadillo

Horton Foot, headmaster of Clongowes Grammar School wears his hair gathered into a topknot. Before coming to Clongowes he was the assistant headmaster at Esslingen Middle school and the Dunning Perth College for Advanced Savantism in Kinross. Every morning before class headmaster Foot reads aloud from Novela de Rinconete y Cortadillo,

"…he would not deserve, for mere pimping, to row in the galleys, but rather to command and be admiral of them; for the office of pimp is no ordinary one, being the office of persons of discretion, one very necessary in a well-ordered state…”.
[1] Moisel, a soft-skinned boy who sat at the head of the class raised his hand and said ‘…my da knows a pimp who’s always belly-aching about getting short-changed and fucked over...’. To this headmaster Foot replied ‘…a cheats a cheat my boy, there’s no two ways about it…’. The soft-skinned boy looked at the headmaster Foot and said ‘…but sir, to fuck-over someone is a sin…?’. ‘…not if he’s got a lay on the land…’ the headmaster Foot snickered, ‘…and a topknot where a bottom-knot should be…’. Moisel joined in the class as they sang glory be to the Walpurgis Night,

Now to the Brocken the witches ride;
The stubble is gold and the corn is green;
There is the carnival crew to be seen,
And Squire Urianus will come to preside.
So over the valleys our company floats,
With witches a-farting on stinking old goats.

‘…you’re voices are atrocious…!’ bellowed the headmaster Foot, ‘…stop before the windows shatter, you heathen imps …’. Rennes Bretagne and Clorox Cazeaux stood facing the buttress, never to be seen or heard from again. The Bretagne’s and Cazeaux’ have no place among proper soul-bounded people. ‘…off with they’re feet…’ hollered Moisel, his voice deeper than well brick. Agog, Horton Foot, headmaster, left his place at the front of the class and hightailed it out the door, never to be heard from again (however he was seen skulking, his feet threaded with onion sores).

Upon waking, his back stitched with pain, that alms man fingered the blacktop in search of his cap. His head swarming, he couldn’t make hide or tail of where he’d placed his cap, the coldness having laid waste to his collarbone and outside hip. That afternoon he knocked into Tyrone Lothrop behind the aqueduct, both men facing one another, the alms man wondering where he’d seen the hulking figure before, Tyrone Lothrop fixing his stare on the alms man’s cap.

[1] CERVANTES SAAVEDRA, Miguel de, Novela de Rinconete y Cortadillo, Deutscher Taschenbuch, 1981

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"Poetry is the short-circuiting of meaning between words, the impetuous regeneration of primordial myth". Bruno Schulz

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