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We walk, sedately. The sun is out, in the sky there are white fluffy clouds, the kind that look like headless sheep. Given our wings, our blinkers, it¶s hard to look up, hard to get the full view, of the sky, of anything. But we can do it, a little at a time, a quick move of the head, up and down, to the side and back. We have learned to see the world in gasps. ... When we think of the past it¶s the beautiful things we pick out. We want to believe it was all like that. *** I would like to believe this is a story I¶m telling. I need to believe it. I must believe it. Those who can believe that such stories are only stories have a better chance. If it¶s a story I¶m telling, then I have control over the ending. Then there will be an ending, to the story, and real life will come after it. I can pick up where I left off. It isn¶t a story I¶m telling. It¶s also a story I¶m telling, in my head, as I go along. Tell, rather than write, because I have nothing to write with and writing is in any case forbidden. But if it¶s a story, even in my head, I must be telling it to someone. You don¶t tell a story only to yourself. There¶s always someone else. Even when there is no one. A story is like a letter. Dear You, I¶ll say. Just you, without a name. Attaching a name attaches you to the world of fact, which is riskier, more hazardous: who knows what the chances are out there, of survival, yours? I will say you, you, like an old love song. You can mean more than one. You can mean thousands. I¶m not in any immediate danger, I¶ll say to you. I¶ll pretend you can hear me. But it¶s no good, because I know you can¶t. *** Mayday used to be a distress signal, a long time ago, in one of those wars we studied in high school. I kept getting them mixed up, but you could tell them apart by the airplanes if you paid attention. It was Luke who told me about mayday, though. Mayday, mayday, for pilots whose planes had been hit, and ships ± was it ships too? ± at sea. Maybe it was S O S for ships. I wish I could look it up. And it was something from Beethoven, for the beginning of the victory, in one of those wars. Do you know where it came from? said Luke. Mayday? No, I said. It¶s a strange word to use for that, isn¶t it? ... It¶s French, he said. From m¶aidez.
Blessings that can be counted. It¶s a barren landscape. Pleasure is an egg. None of these facts has any connection with the others. It¶s difficult to resist. The shell of the egg is smooth but also grained. Although for them it may have lasted all the forever they had. in the air or on the tongue. everything a huge foreground. The life of the moon may not be on the surface. The first egg is white. there are too many parts. what I should or shouldn¶t have done. small pebbles of calcium are defined by the sunlight. the . as I lie flat on my single bed rehearsing what I should or shouldn¶t have said. Women used to carry such eggs between their breasts. to incubate them. *** What I need is perspective. the arrangement of shapes on a flat surface. sides. and it didn¶t last forever. The illusion of depth. Perspective is necessary. It is the French word for flesh. Under the skirt is the second egg. on the fingers of one hand. of details. the kind that looks like a woman¶s torso. but inside. It¶s warm. perhaps the greatest. which could mean this or that. and another plate with an eggcup on it. But remember that forgiveness too is a power. Otherwise you live with your dace squashed against a wall. yet perfect. It¶s a reconstruction now. It¶s impossible to say a thing exactly the way it was. so it¶s now in the watery sunlight that comes through the window and falls. as yet another remove. sometime in the future. nuances. The eggcup is white china with a blue stripe. I think that this is what God must look like: an egg. *** I sit in the chair and think about the word chair. too many. so their minds would not be distracted by profusion.Help me. hairs. and to withhold or bestow it is a power. what more can I want? *** This is a reconstruction. In front of me is a tray. Others have thought such things. It can¶t last forever. as if it had an energy of its own. When I get out of here. created by a frame. It can also mean a mode of execution. a plate with three slices of brown toast on it. please remember: you will never be subject to the temptation or feeling you must forgive. it will be a reconstruction then too. close-ups. But possibly this is how I am expected to react. a vitamin pill. The egg is glowing now. It can also mean the leader of a meeting. It is the first syllable in charity. To beg for it is a power. To look at the egg gives me intense pleasure. in a skirt. too many gestures. how I should have played it. they did get out one way or another. If I ever get out of here ± Let¶s stop there. The sun goes and the egg fades. and on the tray are a glass of apple juice. and you¶ve made it this far. All of it is a reconstruction. being kept warm. crosscurrents. The minimalist life. even in the form of one voice to another. too many shapes which can never be fully described. But if you happen to be a man. Otherwise there are only two dimensions. believe me. a small dish containing honey. and they were always right. half-colors. These are the kinds of litanies I use. you always have to leave something out. in my head. it¶s the sort of desert the saints went into. That would have felt good. waning. I move the eggcup a little. to compose myself. on the tray. in bad times before this. If I have an egg. brightening. as a woman. I pick the egg out of the cup and finger it for a moment. I intend to get out of here. because what you say can never be exact. if I¶m ever able to set this down. a spoon. like craters on the moon. in any form. a man. too many flavors. brightening again.
faces. a zero. *** I wish this story were different. smoothly and oiled. I wait. if not happier. like pictures in an album. where a stone¶s been thrown. *** When I was younger. which will be lukewarm like the room and will have a green film on the yolk and will taste faintly of sulphur. I wish it were more civilized. I wish it showed me in a better light. on streets otherwise decorous and matronly and somnambulent. from wherever they are. like a body caught in crossfire or pulled apart by force. they slip away from me. the molecules of the face. or snow. for the arrival of the inevitable egg. eggs. I stand give seven without shoes. there¶s a smile and it¶s gone. I have trouble remembering what I used to look like. I forgot to include the loss of energy. their faces. so many unsaid words. because where would we be without them? . it¶s all you¶ve got. Time to take stock. blackness eats then. But they fade. Sweat already on my upper lip. flowers. I try to hold them still behind my eyes. The geometrical days. I wait for the day to unroll. aurora. their features curl and bend as if the paper¶s burning. but in the meantime there is so much else getting in the way. Some days I do appreciate things more. a diagram of futility. It¶s my fault. for the earth to turn. I need to remember what they look like. or about sudden realizations important to one¶s life. though I stretch out my arms towards them. But they won¶t stay still for me. according to the round face of the implacable clock. Stay with me. I have brown hair. I wish it were about love. like explosions. *** I try to conjure. *** I sit in my chair. to raise my own spirits. my brain going pastel Technicolor. I have one more chance. on water. A glimpse. so much gossip than cannot be verified. I¶m sorry there is so much pain in this story. rainstorms. But they won¶t. All things white and circular. so much creeping about and secrecy. then a face again. but then I decide I¶m only having an attach of sentimentality. so much speculation about others. birds. the wreath on the ceiling floating above my head. less hesitant. then at least more active. Live in the present.weave of the bedsheet. I am forgetting too much. ghosts at daybreak. dance of electrons. which go around and around. A ring. a glow. crisscrossed with tiny roads that lead nowhere. make the most of it. like a frozen halo. or even about sunsets. Maybe you appreciate things more when you don¶t have much time left. like the beautiful-sunset greeting cards they used to make so many of in California. I¶m sorry it¶s in fragments. I am thirty-three years old. they move. Highgloss hearts. Flowers. Your own skin like a map. I have viable ovaries. for instance. less distracted by trivia. I want to say. Back to wherever they are. I wish it had more shape. in a way. And there is so much time to be endured. But there is nothing I can do to change it. I would think. time heavy as fried food or thick fog. a pale shimmer on the air. Which is not where I want to be. Otherwise you live in the moment. and then all at once these red events. imagining age. so much whispering. Maybe it is about those things. I¶ve tried to put some of the good things in as well. A hole in space where a star exploded.
over again. if I meet you or if you escape. in the future or in heaven or in prison or underground. I believe you into being. therefore you are. So I will myself to go on. because in it I did not behave well. this limping and mutilated story. So I will go on. I am coming to a part you will not like a tall. which is not much but includes the truth. After all you¶ve been through. I believe you¶re there. but I will try nonetheless to leave nothing out. Because I¶m telling you this story I will your existence. I tell. as I will hear yours too if I ever get the chance. wasn¶t once enough for me at the time? But I keep on going with this sad and hungry and sordid. By telling you anything at all I¶m at least believing in you. because after all I want you to hear it. some other place.Nevertheless it hurts me to tell it over. What they have in common is that they¶re not here. . you deserve what I have left. Once was enough.
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