Sunday, July 11, 2010

Imbecile

He threw a hail of birdseed into the air and watched the pigeons tumbling wildly over his head. Next to the bust of King Olaf next to the merry-go-round sat an imbecile counting time. The imbecile made a whooshing sound with his fingers against the leg of his corduroy trousers, choroids of blood exploding under the half-moons of his fingernails. The imbecile had come to see the Herschel Liege Pantomime Troop, and if he were lucky have the bearded lady sign his cap. As he knew no one in town he kept to himself, sleeping on a bench in the park behind the aqueduct and eating the crusts of bread he kept in his corduroy pant’s pocket. He stared at the bust of King Olaf then at the pigeons then at the bust, his attention rarely held for more than a few seconds. Reaching into his pant’s pocket he retrieved a crust of bread, the corners green with mould. Breaking it into equal portions he swallowed each piece whole, his throat tightening like an angry fist. In his other pocket he carried a red silk glove with gold stitching and a whalelike (see Jorge Luis Borges, The Book of Imaginary Beings, ‘Animals in the Form of Spheres’) crest on the forearm, for the glove was long, reaching above the wrist to the elbow. ‘never before have I witnessed such baboonery!’ exclaimed the Witness. ‘and on the steps of the holy shrine… shame on you boy, shame!’ The imbecile ran like the wind, his pockets turned out, the red silk glove with gold stitching trailing from his pant’s pocket like a nosebag.

As it was the day before the Feast of the Lamb, and no one save the harridan’s sister had bothered to ask the rector’s assistant if they could rent the church basement, and seeing as the two loathed one another, the feast was called off.

The cinema screen took up the whole end of the block. Held in place with iron tetrads and bailing wire the screen stretched across the median like a matron’s sheets held tight between two nuns. The street sweeper stood astride his cart cracking pecans with his hole puncher, his jacket nickeled with shells.

No comments:

About Me

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

Blog Archive