Monday, November 30, 2009

Monsieur Hellene

Remembering how to forget he forgot all the bad things in his life. Get out of the way you smarmy git! Auxilio sings doe-ray-me-la-so-tea. Stop that doe-raying can’t you see it’s los fin de siècle? By God and grace shut the door! He forgot to remember forgetting everything he’d remembered to regret. Bounding and leaping he skyrocketed into the great blue, leaving a trail of corn-fed piss in his wake. Presto Desejo fell from such a great height he fractured his collarbone and the hinge that keeps his jaw from falling open. Queretaro de Arteaga and his dog Rinconete are fond of the cool evening breeze blowing in off the bluffs, face and snout pushed into the evening scrimmage.

Decamping from the train he felt a tremor his legs; the elder wheelchair-bound rider spitting a glob of black chaw out the closed window. Enid Pollock and Mary Blyton fell from such a great height, far far above sea level, higher than the highest kite could ever hope to soar, falling into the Le Solidarność, a barge on its way to meet a ship carrying the likes of, and no other than the great tightrope walker and gastromancer Paweł Hellene who was on his way into town to celebrate the biannual Running of the Snakes. ‘so nice to see you monsieur Hellene’ said the Witness in welcome. ‘it has been some time, indeed a year has passed, and none to quickly since your last visit… if I may be so bold, and please correct me if I am mistaken, which I assure you I never am, but…’. Monsieur Hellene, feeling the cool evening breeze blowing in off the bluffs, hair tussled, tresses whipping wildly round his shoulders, cleared his travel weary throat and said ‘shut your git and get me a jug of your worst Sherry… and I don’t mean that dog piss you drink on Sundays!’ Taken aback, his teeth cutting into the back of his jaw, the Witness smiled and went in search of a jug of Sunday Sherry, his thoughts on how best to drowned Paweł Hellene without getting nabbed or upsetting God.

This is how it all began, one man’s search for nonsense in a practical world. Upside or right-side, never the twain shall meet. These are troubling times, tell say so he heard. Right-side or bottommost never shall the train meet. Decamping from the twain he watched a wheelbarrow-bound man throw caution out the window. ‘the next time I see that troublemaker Hellene I’ll give him a good thrashing by God’. The Witness witnessed himself standing cockeyed awaiting the lighting of the lamps, the lamplighter nowhere to be seen. ‘a fine cock of a lackey… leaving the lamps unlit on such a black dreary night’.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Mladych Klub

‘what?’ asked the alms man. ‘the absurdity of it’ said Dejesus. ‘of this?’ asked the alms man making a circle with his arms. ‘yes’ said Dejesus. The day began like a daring goose crossing the sideways quacking. You never know when the truck that will smite you is rattling round the corner. Keeps a man two-steps out of the fray dancing. Sils Maria and her lover Klidas spent the afternoon counting tall ships anchored at the Mladych Klub. Jaroslav and Hasek banged up a good-for-nothing first-mate with a lousy outlook on seafaring. ‘what?’ asked Hasek. ‘that no-good-for-nothing stepped on my shoe’ said Jaroslav. His great-granddad fought the Second Battle of Ypres over and over again in his head. His great-grandmamma lit the pilot light with a canary-yellow wooden match, the flames scorching the overhead salt and pepper shelf. Marcelle Spottiswoode fought shoulder to shoulder with his great-granddad, overtaken by gas he fell dead in a man-size trench. His great-granddad had nightmares of men gassed dead falling into trenches. Men smote dead by men with better weapons and bigger helmets. Falling into man-size holes trenched in the dirt by men not yet overtaken dead with gas. His great-granddad fought in the gas trenches in the Second Battle of Ypres.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Cielo de la Puta

This is not the time for dillydallying. Time is momentary and fleeting, not durational or all-consuming. Time is reckoned in minutes, seconds and hours, not in hammer strikes and uppercuts. Uproars beget pandemonium’s beget mayhem beget chaos beget upheavals and tumults beget rackets and hullabaloos. Mayhem begets bedlam begets anarchy begets disarray. Nestor Sargent, lifting the latchkey well over his head, belayed ‘best keep your feet aboveboard… the seas are crummy this time of year’. Never before had he thought that the sea would toss him overboard tacked as he was to the planking. The silverfish floundered swimming lazily alongside the boat, dorsal fins cutting a piano-wire thin incision in the blue green water. He felt like a rock bottom fish swimming against the encroaching tide. Wave upon wave crashing, booming, in his ears. Eyes sisal red and weepy. The back of his head spun with kelp and seagrass. Gulping breath after gasping breath of ocean spray, a din raging in his heart and liver, the outside world spinning round around and round. ‘best keep your feet aboveboard… keeps a man hale and undrowned’.

(That summer his da got la palmada from a puta dentada torcida, La señora del Cielo de la Puta, una cara grave puta with a quick temper, threatening him with la maldición de la puta if he didn’t keep his chancrous yap shut).

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Nestor Sargent

Suddenly, unexpectedly, the man in the hat felt a burning pain his leg. This was not the first time a discomfit had careworn him. He concocted a concoction of salves and ointments, fulminating the wound with Rhamnousia’s palliative and Gelderland’s tonic. Arhus Risskov concocts the most mercurial unguents, filtering the concoctions through tripe and corn-fed gizzard. ‘oh but what I wouldn’t do for a Risskov’s tonic’ said the harridan to her sister. ‘goes down smoother than a pealed plum’. ‘how eager thou must be’ said her sister, ‘...begotten at Harrogate vicarage and born at Kiernan’s pub’. She slept under a blanket of tripe, gizzards tucked into her boots. We at Risskov’s swear, by Christ, we have the best tonic, bar naught. Eager for a Gelderland’s tonic she set out for Kiernan’s, her sister hot on her heels. ‘you mustn’t leave these things too long… otherwise they get stiff as whiplash’. The Harrogate vicarage keeps stock: soiled bed linen and week-old palliatives and a picture of King Olaf on the cistern wall. Nestor Sargent fell ass over teapot emptying pissbuckets for the Harrogate vicarage, his left hand sullied with other men’s drippings.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Delegacy’s Butcher Shop

Outside Delegacy’s butcher shop a three-legged cur hunts the scraps table, her back raised to the moon. Outside Barney Kiernan’s pub Calloway and Berks throw craps and drink bitter ale, the cur wandering into the throwline. And not a moment too soon the sky falls crashing onto their heads, Calloway, Berks and the cur finding safekeeping beneath the buckler’s awning. Thake tripped the buckler sending him bounding head over teapot. Thake was known to eat horse cakes with syrup, shifting the blame for his ruinous life on those few crumbly people who populated his meager sad life.

Annalisa Cuarón, mistress to man and beast, and Orozco Ojørn, man of uncommon endowments, left the train station on a Wednesday, never to be seen or heard from again.

“God bless me, gentle (or it may be plebeian) reader, how eagerly must thou be looking forward to this preface, expecting to find there retaliation, scolding, and abuse against the author of the second Don Quixote--I mean him who was, they say, begotten at Tordesillas and born at Tarragona!”.
(Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote, Volume II., Author’s Preface)

Scherpenhuyzen Qankejeff, ass, fool and malapert, thinks nothing of jigging the rig with wood sweepings and chokecherries. Quetónoma, malapert, ass and fool sees the world kilted to the left. Scherpenhuyzen Qankejeff and Quetónoma were last seen leaving the train station on a Thursday, their asses kilting to the right.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Fräulein Breitbach

The legless man crawled out of the ditch exhausted and none the better for wear. He was no stranger to wells and ditches; though when it came to falling he preferred ditches to wells. Clapping the dust from his pant’s legs he read the sign over the door to Consolas’s taverna, 'Enter at Your Own Hazard!' ‘I dare say I’m up to it… no truer man am I’.

He covered his hat in vark. This, he figured, would prevent the microwaves from coddling his thoughts, currying them into a soupy rue. Reif, a vark fanatic of enormous rein, cautioned him against applying too much gold skin on his head, fearing it might disintegrate his brain or cause a inoperable tumor. That winter he rented a room at the Hotel zum Blauen Kreuz, Fräulein Breitbach serving him breakfast and straightening his bed sheets. ‘deixe por favor a placa na cama’. That winter the whore’s dog died from the whooping. That summer a savant was born to a woman with pale yellow skin. That autumn she sold her savant child to a rag peddler with grey brown eyes and a cudgel foot. The North Harrogate Curates are in cahoots with the Northallerton Barbers, the twain meeting behind the Alperton Abattoir Saturdays and Wednesdays after seven. Saturday before the first snow flew one of the North Harrogate Curates found a swaddling under a faggot of sticks, the pale yellow skinned woman’s savant child bundled in oilcloth and rags. He swore he’d never let a woman steal his heart twice. ‘stay away from pale yellow skinned women’ said his mamma, ‘…they’ll crush your heart’.

Gwinnett hat das die grössten grey brown eyes… the blacks whiter than the whites. Standing cocksfooted the buckler hailed a cab, the hack stopping on the edge of a dime. Then he hailed a second third and fourth, a column of cabs queuing as far as the eye could see. ‘that’ll teach you’ he said, ‘that and a pointy stick in the eye’. The clock on the clocktower struck 7½ past the hour, the custodian screaming ‘awls well that ends well’, the sky turning red green blue and pomegranate.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Caballo de Pegamento

Painted in white lye on the guardrail he read:

And sought renown on Rocinante mounted;
Here, underneath this cold stone, doth he lie
. (Ibid)

How odd indeed he thought: a Spanish ne’er-do-well and a Caballo de Pegamento. Never shall the twain meet. Vilém de Flossier rides sidesaddle, his rump galloping across the open plains. A man of such gainful abilities need never explain a thing. They drank tic-tac under a jaundice yellow moon, gulping and eructating like sniggling pigs. ‘there aren’t many horses like yours left in the world’. ‘and those few there are are fit for the pegamento factory’. Brushstroked on the back wall of the Consolas’s taverna he read:

A man’s house is his Consolas’s; Here
Doth he lie underneath this cold stone

Doffing his cap he doth act like a maudlin fool. Ne’er-do-well, his manner and gallop is fit for a gabber. Men like him cantor not, preferring rump galloping across the open plains. Under the stable-post he kept a pot of glop for riposting the stiles, the glue-brush stiff sticky and wiggly loose. ‘Gwinnett hat das die grössten areolas’ offered the post-digger. ‘and my leben but she is sweet’ added the ne’er-do-well.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Curate and the Barber

…whether he was cured of his madness or still suffered from it, and then begged leave to continue his journey; in short, they all separated and went their ways, leaving to themselves the curate and the barber.” (ibid) The carter yoked Catullus (who suffered with mono-onomastikos) to Cratylus, Dario and Argento bridled to the muleteer’s wagon. Giallo and Mulock swan the Guadix channel backwards, Yolande Rose and Joséphine Cardinale inflamed over a lost glove, pilfered, so they believed, by Sergio Ferzetti, who took off in a gallop on the back of his trusty Rocinante. ‘we have no time for this nonsense’ preached the Witness madly. ‘in times of strife and pestilence a man must find his cantor, not gallop off like a woebegone ass’. Awaking from his dreams the man in the hat found a summons pinned to his lean-to flap. The rector’s assistant requests your presence immediately . Please come quickly please. And thank you. Throwing the summons into the rainspout the man in the hat lay down and forced himself back to sleep, hoping and praying that he could revisit the dream he had awoken from a few minutes earlier.

(Author’s aside: I am a phenomenologist, per say… everything I see, feel, touch, etc. has gone through a reduction, even, per say, my own reduction).

They drank tic-tac under a black opium sky, Pelléas et Mélisande sucking him stiff as whiplash, her head making slapping noises against the footboard. Reduced to a mere shell of a man he took a pull of tic-tac, her lips making a smacking noise like wetness. Witnessing the Witness witnessing he saw a man deprived of common sense for whom the world and the people in it were objects for the taking, measly cunt that he was. Some days were better tempered than others, today being no different than the day that preceded it. The image of Pelléas et Mélisande sucking stiffened him, a picric of sugared apricots dancing in his thoughts; things he once coveted but were taken away from him, even in thought.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Los Violadores

‘Ŝi estas ensorĉo graveda grasa’. The Seder Grocer hired a pale skin girl to wipe down the butcher’s counter. Her belly, swollen with new life, sagged below her hips, the grocer’s stomach pinched with cardamom and lentils, the stock pot left to simmer on the stovetop. She slept with her backup against the stars, a daffodil marigold nosegay clutched gamely in her hands. ‘my but you have such pale ashen skin’ said the grocer gaping at his new hire. ‘and such beautiful red auburn hair’. ‘ensorĉo graveda grasa’ said the pale auburn new hire. ‘yes I see’ said the grocer, ‘and what a beautiful swollen belly it is’. On her hands she wore alpaca gloves with goat skin, and on her feet fish shoes with eel soles. Unsheathed he wielded his epee “which the buckler could not protect against the clownish assault (Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote) and slew the monstrous ogre. Chiclana sleeps beneath the moon-filled sky. The Mulhouse sisters sleep with both eyes open. The Celbridge sisters of county Kildare fish for curds behind the Monument Creamery. The stoutly buckler sat beneath an apricot yellow moon, his awl sheared down to tin-ash. And not a moment too soon the sky fell crashing onto their heads, each to a one jigging round the onion-board groaning. ‘ensorĉo grasa’ whispered the new hire, ‘estas graveda’. The congregates pelted Los Violadores with stones and broken bottles; expecting Los Graveda Grasa they were itching for a punch up. The Feast of the Redeemer ended with 27½ men downed by pelting and kicking, the ½ felled halfway to his knees and then onto his back. A woman in fish shoes cobbled past, her hair pulled back into a straight-pin bun. ‘my my what pale ashen skin you have’ said the stoutly buckler. ‘Ŝi estas ensorĉo graveda grasa’ bellowed the Celbridge sisters of county Kildare, the moon-filled night aglow. On the 27th day of the 7th month the Sisters of the Immaculate Deception arrived for the Feast of the Redeemer, the congregates welcoming them with outstretched arms, a child with a nosebleed holding out a nosegay of marigolds and daffodils.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Los Boyos et Los Détentes

Amazonas sisters dress in cockleshell blouses and red ruby red shoes. Unlike the Kallisto sisters, Oreias and Erinyes, who sleep escarped under a blanket of sparkly bright stars, the Amazonas sisters sleep underneath scratchy horsehair blankets. Dearest aunt Alma makes the most delicious raspberry tarts. 25 pea a half-dozen a dozen a half-crown. Aunt Alma dear tucks the edges with the whites of her fingernails, curbing the bottommost crust with a straight razor. Her tarts are know far and wide for their oozing red berry filling. He sat puzzled and wet under the mutton gray sky eating sweet mouthfuls of raspberry treacle tart. ‘tomorrow is Ship’s Day surely’ he quibbled, ‘...or the day after tomorrow, or after that...’. He offered the sisters a bite of red berry tart, the sisters giggling like schoolgirls. ‘no thank you’ said the sisters, ‘…our stomachs’ are about to burst’. Upon awaking, which he did at 27½ minutes passed the hour, he reached for the last morsel of tart, his stomach growling, lips smacking. ‘bursting stomachs. I best keep my distance surely’.

The night came and went, leaving a slight trace of darkness behind. (Los Boyos abhor Los Détentes). Néstor Tolosa and his bride to be Elizabet Fernández live in a one-room walkup over los Partido Justicialista. Los Mambos De Rastreó, a well-received pantomime group, came and went, leaving nothing behind. ‘bursting stomachs. I best keep my distance surely’. Grumbling his stomach swelled, steam escaping through his naval. ‘Giulia!’ shouted Néstor, ‘your stomach is bursting’. Giulia glared sternly at Néstor Tolosa, betroth of Elizabet Fernández, her eyes red as bloodshot. ‘how dare you sir, my stomach is none of your concern!’ The sisters giggled like schoolgirls, jiggling their auburn red tresses. At 27½ minutes passed the hour, not a moment before, Ship’s Day commenced, a gulag of throwbacks and scalawags queuing for funnels of pink cotton candy.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Counting Clouds

Marušić carried a picture of his mamma in a blue dress wearing a pair of the Vincennes Co’s. finest gloves holding a twisted nosegay. Alex Degrande and Simon Drogue tend to the animals, feeding the dogs, horses and oxen from nosebags. The Antinomianist’s congregate behind the Waymart. Unbeknownst to all Marušić jacked the ball and called in nines, the largest fattest Antinomianist yowling ‘yuck yak a daisy… give it back you scoundrel’. Not one to be batfowled by simpletons and dolts Marušić let go with a resounding fart, too to toot to too to toot, his spit-valve willowing the wisp. This is nonsense, pure and simple. All this is is it not? ‘the library is closed’ announced the head librarian sternly, ‘so do go home… please do’. The last time this happened the sky fell, or almost did fell. It did fell almost the sky did that day that last time. All things fell falling almost at the same same time that last time. They did did they that time? The horses and oxen ate from nosebags, the dogs from plastic bowls laid out under the starlit sky. Alex Degrande and Simon Drogue congregate behind the Waymart, the Antinomianist’s having gone home. ‘Ship’s Day falls on a Thursday, not on a Sunday’ said the man in the hat, ‘surely’. The day had taken its toll on the man in the hat, his head sore as trampled ants and bayberries. Its never too late (nor too soon) to learn a new trick.

Blattzinn & Stagniol stood under the Waymart awning counting clouds in the rue gray sky. 1,2,4 7, 1000 they counted. 1001, 2000, naught. Counting they recounted those they saw twice, but in different configurations and places in the sky. They wore tin-foil caps punched out and folded to fit snuggly on the crown of the head.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tales of Intrigue and Folly

Dejesus, not one to underestimate stupidity, threw prudence to the wind and asked for his money back. ‘surely you can’t expect me to accept this?’ he said shaking foot to toe. ‘its practically torn in half?’ ‘posada missioners’ replied the agent, ‘muerte blanca… sí hará el truco’. Not having the faintest idea what the agent was saying Dejesus again demanded his money. ‘you, sir, underestimate my fury’. ‘y usted, sir, subestime mi mañosidad’ said the agent boldfaced. His head aching like a boiler he removed his shoes and lay them sole-side-up on the muddy ground in front of him. Breaking a toothpick-size twig from an elm overhead, its canopy stretching as far as the eye could see, he tatted the mud from between the crepes. Clapping the shoes together like castanets, carobs of dirt falling onto the dry grass, he craned his neck upwards, the sun bathing his face in warmth and bliss. ‘tomorrow's the 10th of yesterday’ he mused, his eyes darting to and fro. ‘the day before Boat Day’. Stretching out under the yawing elm, canopied beneath its chartreuse arbor, he said a prayer ‘God forgive me for I stole an apple from the grocer’s bushel… I beg your forgiveness blessed The’. Hearing nothing, not a peep, he recued himself and went about the day, basking in his ungodliness.

Fiume and Abruzzi stole away in the guts of a scow, eating mangos and salted meat and singing as loud as their lungs would permit”.1

The sign over the door to the apothecary read, ‘Quite Por Favor Sus Cauchos’. The sign over the lavatory read, ‘y, estaba por favor la esperma de sus manos’. ‘Gracias los caballeros y las señoras’ said the cigar store Indian propped up against the register. Of a sudden a parade of younkers and squibs stole in passed the dispensing counter, the apothecary assistant trying valiantly to oversee the oversight of having left the front door unbolted. Every year without fail the day before Ship’s Day fell on a Sunday. The sign over the cotton candy stand read ‘la esperma de sus manos’, anguishing those who hadn’t bothered to wear gloves and those who suffered from Quinsy’s Chill, known to grieve a man to pots, the man in the hat among the unvanquished. ‘have you no mercy?’ cried out a man with a fine-looking cowlick. ‘shut the door and sit down’ quipped a woman sporting a flashing smile, her ears turned out under her bonnet. ‘surely this isn’t happening’ said the man in the hat, the cigar store Indian staring at him mockingly. ‘surely we are mistaken... Ship’s Day falls on a Thursday, not on a Sunday’.

Abruzzi et Fiume, Tales of Intrigue and Folly, 1889.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Gorman Bros. Apothecary

He walked from Appenzell Innerrhoden to Appenzell Ausserrhoden, stopping once to retie his shoe and enjoy a birdlike sandwich roll. After consuming the sandwich roll, delighting in the viands and fruity peppers, he turned and walked backwards, the early morning sun shining down on his cheery countenance. ‘what a day’ he said to himself, ‘...banal yet satisfying just the same’. Wrapping the crusts in the Gladtidings Weekly, Patrick O'Driscoll tourniquet to Honora Cahirgarriff, he retied his shoe a fourth time then set out for home, a static buzzing echoing in his ears.

The Gorman Bros. Apothecary carry face creams and foot oils, Dead Sea facial scrubs, for the woman who needs a leg up in the morning, sore throat lozenges and cough suppressants, lard candies and tasteless pastels, tar, ten-penny nails and truepenny screws, washers, bolts and bunghole mallets, levels and planes, mercurochrome bandages and syphilis tablets, one per customer. The morning he was born his father fell from a great height. He fell into the street below, the draymen catching him in a blanket.

What more can one say when one has said nothing? The man in the hat fell from a great height into the day, the draymen nowhere to be seen. Aarschot and Brabant stood admiring the Admiral’s Duffy unaware that the man in the hat was staring. At them. Walking backwards sideways he made his way towards the statue, stopping just long enough to gawk at the Admiral’s Duffy, the Admiral teething him a broad-faced smile. ‘perhaps I could interest you in a lozenge’ he said to Brabant, Aarschot staring at him suspiciously. Seeing as neither man cared for his solicitous manner, he himself lolling on a freshly unwrapped lozenge, he bolted sideways forwards and vanished into thinning air. ‘gladtidings my arse’ he grumbled, ‘never a truer penny trued’.

The morning he was born his da threw himself headfirst out the hospital window. The Seder grocer, noticing a slumping in his awning called out ‘my God an angle has fallen from the sky!’ ‘sure enough’ said a man picking through a bushel of apples. ‘...and straight as an arrow’ said another man, his hands shaking uncontrollable. Rolling himself off the slumping awning his da brushed off his jacket and hurried down the street, the grocer yelling ‘stop thief… you have an apple in your pocket!’

The Hold Steady - The Swish

Friday, November 06, 2009

Crum’s Bleach

The harridan came down with scrub typhus, ‘serves you right’ scolded her sister ‘you should be more careful with your mouth’. The apothecary agent dispensed a Trombicula Neotrombicula anti-agonist, cautioning ‘this is a cunt to get rid of… so keep your legs closed and your mouth shut’. Pull the ole muffler ova your knows bye Jesus. She made a poultice with Crum’s bleach and an old washrag. Placing it on her forehead she lay down lengthwise on the floor, her arms folded across her breasts. Daisy’s clap started in her shoes and moved end-to-end into her shinbone. It lay dormant for a fortnight and a day, the chills and fever subsiding, then progressed into the soft bones in her sternum. On the second fortnight it moved from her breastplate into her jawbone, where it stayed put for another fortnight and a half. From her jawbone it transmigrated to the crown of her head. And after another fortnight and ½, the smell of Crum’s bleach turning her stomach, it escaped through a borehole drilled in her fontanel, the yellowy vile substance collected in a kidney-shaped saucepan held aloft her ear by the apothecary agent’s wife. ‘that’ll teach you to keep your mouth to yourself’ scolded her sister, her hands gesticulating maddeningly.

He glanced through the Anniversaries and Gladtidings page of the Weekly, his eye fetched by the wedding announcements: Burchel, John and Driscoll Mary Castletownbere, Costello, Augustine E O'Driscoll and Kate (or Catherine) Castletownbere, Crowley, John Driscoll (Minihane) and Johanna Castletownbere Driscoll, Jeremiah Harrington (Caobach) and Mary Allihies Finch, Brendan O'Driscoll and Ann Castletownbere, Paddy O'Driscoll and Katie Allihies Gortahig, Joe O'Driscoll and (Abbey Philomena) Kelly, Pad (or Patrick) O'Driscoll (Minihane) and Honora Cahirgarriff Lynch, Tade O'Driscoll and McCarthy, Edmund O'Driscoll and Catherine Adrigole, Patrick O'Driscoll and Patricia Castletownbere (owner and sole proprietor of the Grocery Shop, Fish Tackle, Radio/TV) McCarthy, Johnny and (Murt) O'Driscoll (Minihane), (O'Driscoll), John Houlihan and Mary Eyeries Cummeendeach wed in a group service at the Gorman Filing House just outside the Five-Mile Fence.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Blue Mouldy

They whored for a fortnight and a day, backs bent double like lowly sinners. He was feeling blue mouldy for a fight, all that bucking and her throwing back her head and the smell of diaper ointment and Crum’s bleach made him navy for a fist-up. “Restitution of conjugal rights”[1] he said loudly under his breath. ‘I heard that somewhere… on the bally it was, chappy bastard laid the comeuppance on me’. Daisy’s clap prêt near slew her, all her hair and eyelashes falling out. Never can tall wend nor hew. Last time she all muss lust hen eye. …whores its cruel out: coal enough fur kittens and a cat. Pull the ole muffler ova your knows bye Jesus. When he started to think like this, in circles and strays, he knew the jig was up; it was only a matter of time before the wind would hearse him willy-nilly home, back bent-double staring starry-eyed at his shoes.

The man in the hat found a letter in the coffee can outside his lean-to awning. Still feeling blue mouldy from the night before he put the letter in his breast pocket and went about his day. On cold days he sniffed sweet ether from a takeout bag, holding in the vitriolic gas until his neck muscles bulged.

[1] Ibid

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Molaño de Salamanca

‘if the sky doesn’t fall tomorrow I’ll take a stroll over to Middletown to see the new jakes… I hear tell its got a sparkling glass seat’. Long before it was unpopular he was reading books about magic and alchemy, folios and scholarly texts on miming and unconscious reasoning; he read until his eyes bled and his nose ran, he read and reread until he couldn’t feel the tips of his fingers, he read upon waking and upon retiring to bed, reading in between appointments and school trips. He was well into his thirties before he realized that all that reading had given him eyesore eyes, his eyelids twig-brittle from salty night-sweats and uncontrollable blinking. ‘nonetheless even should the sky fall tomorrow I will still make my way west to Middletown, stopping only to refresh my memory and slake my thirst’. Whenever he recalled these times he couldn’t help but laugh; all those wasted hours jacking the ball and counting to one-thousand backwards, measly matters of choice and crap reasoning. He’d much rather have spent his time eating warm jammy tarts or spotting turtles with an upturned rake.

(You might ask why, why so many characters, so many troubles, so much confusion and madness? Because I can and I must, and nothing more nor less will do).

Having no legs the legless man had no need for shoes or boots, his stump-ends well cared for with reason and cheesecloth bunting. On the other hand the alms man suffered from podiatric dystopia, both feet pointing in the same direction, to the left, and corns the size of plums. Sometimes reason can indeed be very unreasonable. Molaño de Salamanca shoed his oxen and set out for Borgomanero y Lombardia, Castilla the fool close on his heels. Castilla would rather be at the heel of a fishcart eating warm jammy tarts or spotting turtles with an upturned rake, anything but in the service and company of Molaño de Salamanca. Molaño de Salamanca and his abet Castilla were never seen or heard from again, Borgomanero y Lombardia enveloping them into her flatbone ivory bodice.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Of Hygiene and Prophylactic

Vigo Darzere sleeps under old lady Tregonwell’s stoop, his long gamy legs woven into the latticework. When he is not striking wooden matchsticks off the stone foundation he can be found sitting in front of the public library across the street from the alms man. Written in emerald ink on the foundation stone of the library was the following,

Of hygiene and prophylactic to which should be added suggestions concerning preliminary wetting of the head and contraction of the muscles with rapid splashing of the face and neck and thoracic and epigastric region in case of sea or river bathing, the parts of the human anatomy most sensitive to cold being the nape, stomach and thenar or sole of foot?... Dietary: concerning the respective percentage of protein and caloric energy in bacon, salt ling and butter, the absence of the former in the lastnamed and the abundance of the latter in the firstnamed”.

He sat four feet to the right of the bust of King Olaf, just enough to ensure an unobstructed view of the sleeping prince. The sleeping prince, his eyelids aquiver with holystones and torturous dreams, had fallen asleep while awaiting the arrival of the circus. Feet unshod and sockless, his oxcart tethered to the lamppost unsteadily, he fell in and out of sleep like a drunken chump, the sort of sap men of good measure avoid at all cost. Vigo Darzere struck a match against the sleeping prince’s oxcart, and holding the flame jittery over his hatless head intoned, ‘always loafing on the job, those crazy Jesuits’. Tossing the extinguished match onto the ground in front of him, Vigo let out a long drawn out yawn, the back of his throat scabbed with tapeworm bites and pokes from the stick he used to clear his throat, a milky dribble collecting on the pad of his tongue. Rapidly he shoed the oxen and hightailed it northward, the oxen’s dung-scabby tails trailing behind them. As tomorrow was the day the Deacon gave his perennial exegesis on the Icon Rasputin, every one was in a rush to get home before dark, even Vigo Darzere who had no interest in Russian sexpots or iconography.

[1] James Joyce, Ulysses

Monday, November 02, 2009

Dorset Conurbation

Mostly he liked it when the circus came to town in the middle of July when the sky stayed light past ten o’clock. That way he could see jumping up and down from the back seats behind the tent flap. His granddad sat at the front clacking his tongue and making the face of Jehovah, his grandmamma hiding behind her handbag writhing. On account of she had a bad heart she had to be careful not to let her temper get the best of her and snap one of the veins in her neck. His great-granddad recited The Rape of the Lock before and after lunch,

What dire Offence from am'rous Causes springs,
What mighty Contests rise from trivial Things,

his face a mess of busted vessels and eyesores. His grandmamma grew up in the Bournemouth Dorset Conurbation, her own mamma reading Poe’s The Sleeper before and after breakfast,

At midnight, in the month of June,
I stand beneath the mystic moon.
An opiate vapor, dewy, dim,
Exhales from out her golden rim

the breeze in the curtains wildly flapping. Wymore Tregonwell the apothecary agent dispensed to Mrs. Elmira Clemm a stool softener, and to Ms. Virginia Royster a mild epagogic. The imbecile Sphären delivered tinctures and tablets by bicycle, stopping every so often to retie his shoe or take a piss. He watched him from his bedroom window gliding effortlessly down the street in front of his house, sidesaddle stuffed with vials and little boxes, his cock crowning through his open fly, old lady Tregonwell covering her face in horror.

[1] Alexander Pope, The Rape of the Lock
[2] Edgar Allan Poe, The Sleeper, 1831

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Lecher de Cabra México

Toda Saitama, lecher de cabra México stood admiring his reflection in the window, passersby grumbling under their hats, vainglorious is a blessed curse, makes a monkey out of an otherwise sane man. The man in the hat remembered that drizzly late October morning when the sky fell toppling onto his favorite tan boater, the earflaps snapping, the brim folding up, the smell of bursting clouds and singed rain. All those other stories, tales told by morons and imbeciles, paled in comparison.

He came down with Agony Fever, his granddad bringing it back with him from a trip to Dunakeszi to see the Pest Syphilistarium, El Giral fixing him up with a spoon and a tincture of all-cure. ‘fuck it!’ said his granddad, ‘never heard of a man dying of the jitters’. Makes a man want to sell all his things and head headlong west. …or not… I suppose. Aslant the cabman’s tack taking notes and carryalls with a two leaded pencil. Sad sot doesn’t have the wherewithal to make a missive stick. …slanting the clap with two feet in the tucker’s gin. Skinniest fuck I ever seen! Truth be known. That winter his da bought him a shinny stick for a twofer, hid it in the close with the dog’s bowl. Funniest thing I say I ever seen. His granddad recited Faust before and after dinner,

Toward whom the withering breast doth strain-
Ye gush, ye suckle, and shall I pine thus in vain?

his grandmamma full of anger and stew sitting aslant him. ‘enough of your gibbering’ she’d say, the veins in her neck bulging, his granddad’s stomach hanging over the edge of his chair. Fattest Faust I ever seen, and I seen my fair share. And a fun time was had by all, mostly.

[1] Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust: Der Tragödie erster Teil

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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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