Wednesday, April 6, 2011



An inventory. Perhaps it is time to move freely on a boom and get a Gods-eye view of things. We can rove freely, if not in space, that deceptively manacled notion (and not what it truly claims it is), than with the mind’s eye, a somewhat less-bounded creation, equally open to caprice and groundedness simultaneously.

I never wanted to eliminate objects from space. For I found when I did a corresponding measure was extracted from me. That awful vacuum, that void left me so calm with nullity I doubled back, cognitively, and found myself once again in the realm of stark-black blank panic.

Panic and loss became intertwined, such intimate bedfellows that they transformed themselves into incestuous twins. And like all incestuous unions, the element of depravity was a mask for a royal impulse --- the destructive desire to maintain the line untainted by traits of barbarism.

A scenario: I was in an empty room. I reached out across the stark white medium for some hand to anchor me. When all I met there was my own dangling expectations the void sucked in, bringing in a rushing torrent of air. The in-drawn breath, the empty room, the vast expanse of blank overhead sky --- and my own open, cracked, blank mind --- yawned.

All around me possible worlds bloomed, mushroomed, decayed and contracted. Each one wanted me to take the plunge down their mutually exclusive pathways. But there was nothing there to choose. All possibility of choice was somehow tainted at the notch of the forking path. I would rather lay down at the cross-roads and allow the world in all its grand calliope to pass me by, or rumble over me, than even take a road less traveled.

Earlier, there were reasons to be concerned about possible paths. For the cradle is a far more hazardous container than the coffin. Beginnings bear the stench of inevitability about them, the caressing silence of pure, eternal repose. The cradle is a platform of wrenching growth (for growth has a stench, like the oily smell of burning rubber).

The outstretched chubby arm, grasping a finger in that mock semblance of our simian ancestry, the kicking pliable legs hoisted over the oblong fetal knob that possesses for a human head, the dimpled depression of the fontanel, a crease that imperfectly covers the yet-to-be-sutured skull plates, shifting about hazardously at that joints, without rhyme or reason like some primal continental Pangaea.

I wish I could set the evolutionary life of a man in fast forward. I think few could stomach the hideous display of bulging, popping stretching elongation… the arching upward, the rooting earthwise.

It is a rotating orb, a twisting sphere with two equalized magnetic half-globes which maintain all in an unsteady, tense, equi-pose. And few could stomach the awareness of how easily this tender mechanism can be skewed.

From this, the shadow imploded on itself, and from the collapsed gray pouch emerged little Mina Phillips, my first play companion and shrewd lover. Her father, Franklin Phillips, was a butler in our brownstone for a spell, and then he transmuted, as the Vandermark family fell on hard times, into a handy-man and jack of all trades.

More often than not he brought his little daughter Mina along as he toiled in our house. She would trail along her with her father, making lazy circles around the ladder he had set up in the hall, as he changed an overhead fixture, or sitting on the waxed upstairs gallery floor as he poked his head up a trap door in the ceiling to change some faulty wiring.

She sat on the ground below him, rolling some dung colored marbles along the slick, glistering floor, her prepubescent and knobby knees pressed against the wooden tongue and grooves as if in prayerful supplication. I stepped out from the shadow, a year or two younger than her, but rounder, firmer, already on my blind trajectory toward the unfettered building of cells, block upon merciless block!

“Which one are you?” she lisped. She had a lazy left eye that distractedly turned toward her round button nose.

“What do you mean?”

“Which brother are you?” she clasped a marble in her small hand, and let it drop, abstractly, unto the slick floor. It settled into a dimple in one of the wooden slats all but invisible to the naked eye.

“I’m Langley.” She studied my face with a child like intensity, examining the contours of my body as I stood above her, as if the general impression was more important than the specific instantiation.

“You’re brother is strange,” she lisped.

“Mina, don’t be rude,” her father boomed from above, as if from the cloud shrouded peak of Sinai, his head concealed in a duct. She frowned, and nervously toying with a piece of her brown tangled hair, looked at me again with her one good eye, the other one seeming to focus along the herringbone pattern wall paper that lined the hall.

“Sorry Pappa,” she said without a trace of genuine contrition.

“What’s wrong with your brother? What’s his name?”


“What’s wrong with him?”

“Mina,” her father’s voice boomed. Then he momentarily removed his head from the duct, “I told you not to be rude.”

“Yes Pappa. Pappa, can Langley and I go off and play?”

“Yes,” he said, head back in the duct, “just don’t wander off too far.”

She stood up, a head shorter than me, gingham dress falling just below the dimples south of her knees, springy, tawny brown hair falling in unruly waves over her broad, blemishless forehead. A ribbon, placed high atop her head earlier in the day, was making a slow migration southward, barely perched on the nethermost region of her twisted, falling hair.

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