Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Spreewald

We feed each other soup, and be kind, because our poor frazzled brains have trekked further than you could ever imagine in these elastic, liquid hours between the small of night and the dawn.

The small of night like the small of your back: a curved hollow it is nice to rest hands in.

The walls are still full of faces; the knots in the wood haven’t yet closed their mouths. But it is quieter than last night when downstairs flickered with torchlight and prison guards, when the room was full of dark holes and malevolent shadows, when the pheasants rattled their wings and blood oozed through their breasts: pfffthhrpp.

In the chasm between the chemicals and the brandy we clutched for strings, but it was tricky. Our hands were strange entities and we lost the language of their spheres. Perhaps deep frying would help, perhaps everything could be crisped and crisped again, and what better way to treat this shaft of madness than leaning over a pot of boiling, burbling oil?

J took to the kitchen and I fell in love again, and again. Dominoes collapsing. He stood in a sphere of yellow light while I tried to hook my brain onto some spur, some thorn, any kind of barb to stop this wriggle and shift. My spills of tobacco stretched and slid and turned geometric in the liquid surface of the table, and it was more beautiful than you could ever imagine. Droplets of water turned the ink to twenty dimensions. All this, slidey things.

We feed each other soup and hold small, soft hands. Our brains are still throbbing. The walls are still gaping. We twitch at turn at the spickles and spackles. We bring the deckchairs out into the light.

Tequila and orange juice for breakfast, and this warm shaft of sunbeam. It’s enough.

A lesson: we will remember to cook for one another, offer small, hot bowls of soup when such things are necessary. We will wait life out until the sunlight and we will learn to be kind.

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