Monday, May 31, 2010

Tripe and Onions

Hips chasséing she struts back and forth in front of the Waymart, stopping every few yards to mark her territory with seedlings of orangey piss. ‘the smell is altogether unpleasant… seedling yards of lemony piss!’ Her breath smelled like cur’s piss. She appeared in front of the Waymart clocktower, her carpetbag clutched like a swaddling child to her bosom. ‘the smell the smell’ screeched Enrico the soft-headed pimp, ‘can’t you smell it?’ ‘by God… run I say run, the pox is upon us!’ shouts Gunter Grünenthal, the street frenzied with people running amok. ‘a feast is not a bare-knuckled free-for-all’ says Dejesus having arrived on the sly. ‘nor is it pumpernickel and corked cider…!’ ‘enough is enough!’ cries the Witness, his hands blued with printers’ ink. ‘away with you… scat!’

That night they had tripe and onions for supper. Wife’s tales say tripe and onions rids one’s breath of that cur’s pissy smell. Skillet-fried then put aside to sweat; tripe and onions: best served with cornmeal biscuits and Baldur’s Gin. Brugg’s, he’s the one’s got teeth like rusty hinges, sits all daylong watching passerby’s pass by, liver and onions breath, coattails in tatters. Its no wonder people throw scraps at him, hooking tripe and onions off his bone-hard skull. The day of the Feast of the Pox the cabman’s shelter was doddered off its cement foundation. ‘by Christ … run I say run, the pox is upon us!’’ yells a woman from her balcony. Unable to contain his anger any longer Fajardo Rafael cries ‘you would think they’d lime the corpses’. ‘by Christ but its awful!’ yells the woman from her balcony, her fat blubbering child tugging hungrily at her skirts.

The winter Lela had her first period she bled like a hen, pullets of blood spotting her sheets and the insides of her underpants. She thought she’d given birth to eggs, tiny red dots like the ones on her mother’s favourite dress. She hid the sheets in the close next to the stairs, stuffing them into a crook under the stoop. She wrapped her underwear in butcher’s paper and hid them in the bushes alongside the house.

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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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