Incendiary Guest House
Splinter Stories from the Hardware Store
Every time I left the Boarding House to explore the town outskirts my fellow lodgers gave me looks of lit torches ready to set me afire first change they got. Malevolent Bleak-stone Villagers Willing me to return with Blazing Fury. Her was an abandoned Bohemian kept on a short leash. Apparitions wandered about seeking solace with the solitude. Slaying dragons only they could see.
With the Ascending Sun ushering in Daylight we are bound by the Eternal Truths of human nature not easily displaced or dispersed by culture, religion or tradition. For the heart, emotions and feelings over rule dogma, doctrine, regulations and rules. Skies willfully approached us beckoning forth our path.
In the Caves I saw She who was without nose with bubs for fingers shoveling earth with scooped perdition. Her looked into my questioning eyes spoke forth, “The Krocodyll ate my fingers and cut off me nose. As she snorted, sniffed and shot up another dose.
Frozen Dead stare out blankly from the casements as thick fog obscures, increasing the rift between reality and fantasy. Embryos seemed to sprout from thin spaces of adjoining floor planks. Babies manifested like flies on dead bodies. Despite dusty streets kicking up sand and sawdust, shaky hovels ready to collapse if the occupants sneezed too hard the Town was Vibrant and Overwhelming. Attacking all five senses encompassing the wearer in pure pleasure sensory of overload. Each individual sense fighting for its turn to experience Village Succulent delights. The inhabitants levitated elevated on unseen puppet strings guided herky jerky marionette Punch & Judy Dance moves. The church that sprang up in the very spot where a journalist was blown to bits not many years ago. His blood and entrails mixed in with adobe mortar.
This small city was like a Grand Bordello in tastes, textures and sounds all reverberating off each other. Walking the streets was discovering a series of abandoned unlocked room that had been sealed for 200 years. Push aside the cobwebs and dust to find hidden personal and historic treasures. Interiors frozen in time still waiting for the original owners return. Invisible inhabitants ~~ Ambassadors to times long past.
Merlin snapped his fingers, wiggled his nose, clicked his heels together and waved a magic wand transporting us to a city ideal in imagination.
Stepping from the heady aroma of fragrance filled perfumed streets visitors were ushered into exotic elaborately decorated quarters decorated with expensive Persian rugs, medieval tapestries, silk draperies hung upon windowless walls, tables adorned with Tiffany lamps. A subtle scent of incense permeated the airways. The decorations seemed incongruous yet harmonized together in an irregular yet pleasing manner. Palatial taste a bit ostentatious like a Renaissance bordello. The furnishings were highly articulated and faceted Baroque/Rococo objects, many with deep gouges and gashes suggesting transparency and interior penetration. This room and much of the house as well as the street urchins who passed through seemed to us a surrealist Orientalist fantasy. At the far end of the living room hung a painting of a Minotaur coupling with a Centauride.
He waited an lifetime for his passion which never came. The poorly dressed country boy from the backwoods was now an elegantly attired Metro-sexual, fop, a dandy of no substance. He knew the price of everything but the value of nothing.
As he walked out from the restaurant where we had all dined his body shivered and shook in the 90 degree heat. Such quaking was a premonition of times to come.
Not my type. Not my type at all she thought at first glance. He was tall, thin with curly hair wearing a handlebar mustache and mutton chop sideburns that had gone out of style ages ago. But he proved to be a sorcerer, wizard and warlock drawing her gently into his web. He spoke images, pictures and portraits weaving together words that appeared onscreen before your eyes bringing you places you only envisioned in your dreams. He said I was a Rosebud of Great Elegance and I bloomed before his eyes.
He was tender. Oh so tender. Like slow cooked meat falling off the bone. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe, said my mind. Fall inside his soul said my Heart. Fused into one. From this Fusion came a girl child wild and free willed. So much like her Father.
He had not a penny, peso nor centavo to his pocket and I am not one to live solely on air and dreams. His claim to fame was the largesse of his friends. Such generosities soon ran out as his artistic abilities ceased to translate into food, clothing, baby food, diapers or rent. Our lives resembled Cubist paintings populated by beings with both eyes on one side of their heads.
I had to become a She-Wolf protecting my lone cub. Zasu! Zasu My Love! I could hear his cries as he ran alongside the train. But I neither looked or responded for to have met his gaze would have melted my resolve.
Even long after I left the bond was still there. So strong. Unbreakable. What is joined together in spirit cannot be thrust apart by circumstance or physical distance. Later his best books written in the depths of poverty were celebrated and honored long after his infirmities prevented him from accepting previously designated awards. Undiscovered he had worn his books like a Dunce Cap.
Books once frustrated and flustered now burst forth bursting with confidence and pride. Posh parties, syrupy words and embarrassing praises sprung up out of nowhere. Famine had turned Feast. Gentrification aliens spouted slick words of little understanding for experiences only glimpsed from behind gilded windows, Red doors with brass knockers leading to golden paved streets. Claiming a world known best to their maids, nannies, butlers, doormen and house servants. Those who live in mansions and estates know nothing of tin roofed shacks and shanties bereft of indoor plumbing or expected amenities. Then you know that it wasn’t rain that hit you but a flock of birds resting on the pole lines above your head. .
Figures on the Paddle-wheel encouraged us to sing and dance to pass the time. Sparks of madness couple with insanity flew out from street cars and trams attempting to ignite my swollen spirit. Broken down Market Boats moored in temporary docks became Non-Stop parties until parts could be found to continue journey crossing. Such a trip morphed from a Vacation into a Vocation.
One event can easily split history in two: Before and After. Narrated stories like Jig Saw Puzzle pieces come together from different perspectives as though looking at the same event from various angles and distances. Yours could be a date stuck in history like the Ides of March, Armistice Day, Dec 7th or 9/11. The story and the people are One. Always. Revolutions, Revolutionaries eventually become the Establishment Status Quo. There’s that flock of birds again. Blessing all those who sit below them.
Her was an unknowing prisoner in that house for a long time. Her mind a thicket of brambles and nettles. Stinging with cunning hooks and sharps.
Her ~~ Returning to the home time and again. It was a part of her distant past and daily present. The House was a gifted sanctuary to her brittle psyche. Within the burning hot coal city I was surrounded by icy cold rains, pounding sleet and frequent blizzards.