Sunday, January 23, 2011

Church of Thélème’s

His booted feet kicking clumps of earth Jesús Juventud stood staring at his reflection in the window, the grocer swiping at him with a broom. ‘shoo or I will smite you with my broom!’ cried the grocer. ‘malcontent!’ Jerome Ahasuerus, middle brother of Caleb, Eusebius and Sophronius, sat behind the Church of Thélème’s chewing and reading a pamphlet he’d found under a shrub, the sun burning a tonsure into the top of his head. ‘brother, hand me your eyeglasses, this print is awfully small’. ‘are you getting a headache?’ asked Jesús Juventud fiddling with a handful of green twigs. ‘not yet…it’s the print; it’s putting a strain on my eyes’. ‘perhaps it’s the poor quality of the ink...the kind they use for sheet music and poor people’s bibles’ said Jesús Juventud squinting. ‘perhaps…but I’m more inclined to think it’s the poor quality of the paper…the kind they use for wrapping meat and poultry’. ‘I could see that’ said Jesús Juventud squinting one eye then the other. ‘what’s that? asked Jerome drawing the pamphlet closer, the print dissolving into an inky black splotch. ‘I could see is what I said’ said Jesús. ‘see what?’ asked Jerome his hands shaking from the pressure he was applying to the corners of the pamphlet. ‘never mind’ said Jesús, a hint of hurt in his voice. ‘either way you can’t make heads nor tails out of it can you?’ ‘but I will! I surely will!’ said Jerome Ahasuerus defiantly, the pamphlet pressed tight against his nose. ‘yes surely you will’ said Jesús Juventud. Leaving behind a stack of twigs arranged like tiny logs hued for an infinitesimal miniscule cottage, Jesús Juventud went his way, the sun splotching everything under its glare.

This is not how it was suppose to be; things got out of hand, the sane went mad and the mad sane, what was inside turned outward, the centre no longer in the middle but cast asunder floundering in no-man’s-land. Deasey, now there’s a swimmer: can make two lengths of the aqueduct on one lungful of weedy air. Saw him do it twice: once for taking the Lord’s Name in vain and once for swearing during morning prayers. Eyjafjardarsysla from on Tyne but now living in Glossop, attempting to swim the aqueduct drowned midway under the Quim’s Span, those cheering him on watching on horrified as he sunk to the bottom like a stone. Ómaigh Sizars wears a top hat summer, winter and fall, reserving his rattan sou'wester for those gray drizzly days between deice and blossom. That day the day of the drowning he stood astride Quim’s Span recouping his trouser, which having dropped below his ankles, exposing his Mongrel pale legs, debarred his ability to cross across to the other side. Looking down below the frayed hems of his trousers, beyond the sprained tendons in his ankle, he exclaimed with unusual alacrity ‘my God, someone throw the poor man a rope!’ not a sole moving an inch. ‘Can’t you see the man’s drowning?’ he cried out. Raising his voice above the din, his face a bad apple rotten to the core, a boy replied ‘Yes, and we don’t give a damn’. ‘Let the bastard drowned’ shouted a second boy hoping to impress the first boy with his brave uncowardly tenor. ‘Have you no mercy!’ shouted Ómaigh Sizars, the first boy watching the second boy poking a dead worm with the lit end of a cigarette.

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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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