Tuesday, August 08, 2006

We responded to the ubiquitous emergency as if it wasn’t happening to us. Our island of pleasure seemed all the more fanciful as we absorbed the continuous updates about the far-away detonations and the dismemberments. Perhaps that was the purpose of the uninterrupted disaster stories, to lull us in our own comfort. Or perhaps it was only an unintended consequence that it threw our surroundings into sharper focus, as if we’d upgraded to HDTV and all our verdant foliage glowed in a CGI spectacle. Our foods were more savory, our sweets more sumptuous, we congratulated each other on the personal milestones in our lives—marriage, pregnancy, professional advancement—we read each others’ lips and shared in carnival laughter that was the only sound to drown out the subtly pulsating high-pitched whine, a modem’s signal or perhaps a smoke alarm, a constant intrusive undertone as if the photograph in which we appeared were underprinted in red. The whine gave a consistent center to all our activities, a center line around which the graph of our pulse rose and fell. The whine was there, comfortingly, whenever our attention fell away from other things.

It provided a constant more compelling that the absence around which we usually came together, it provided an activity with which our over-stimulated, underutilized panic response could occupy itself, it made us feel that we were doing something. It made us feel that we knew something important about what was going on. And knowing something important gave our current pleasures more resonance, and our struggles more meaning. There was a larger evil outside of us, this could explain why some things never went right. And it made even more precious the things that did. Here we were, in this shady back yard sharing a meal, when we could have been lying at the side of a road somewhere, dismembered.

We stirred in our sleep, a gigantic baby whose slightest movement disrupts millions.

The blush on the apricots was flawless.

When one of us was quietly bombed and disappeared, the others kept talking, perhaps the pitch of the whine rose a few intervals in one or another’s head, this would cause some tightening in the muscles of the temples, maybe followed by closing the eyes and squeezing the temples between the thumb and middle finger of one hand.

6 Comments:

Blogger Michael du Plessis said...

This is mesmerising and sinister and and, like the blush on the apricots, ominously "flawless." I especially appreciate the tension between the unruffled rhetorical surface of the prose--it smoothly insinuating second-person plural, its carefully weighted syntax--and what it describes, or avoids describing, by artful indirection. It's made me start to think about writing and disaster and particularly Blanchot's work, so my posting is in response to this piece.

9:09 PM  
Blogger Michael du Plessis said...

Oops, my bad typing: erratum: "it," above, should be "its" in "its smoothly insinuating second-person plural..."

9:15 PM  
Blogger kold_kadavr_ flatliner said...

Would U please help a plethora of King Size, wildchild, rawkuss wordz which are lookin 4 a home in thy novelty?? Thx. Whew. They're pretty insane. They're bereft of reason. Oi! Blimey! They're bloody PINK spiders!!!

Gotta lotta gobba shrewd, surreal, supersonic, sardonic satires, sassy N savvy elixers N electronic elegance on our YOUTHwitheTRUTH blogs. Wannum? Have'm. N'joym. Gettm outta my hair!!!

How mucha wanna betcha our irrational, hot-shot, fuse-blowin-exploits R a copious madhouse of one lavish bookay? Our proFUSE NRGod who leads U.S. to explosive fairy-tales in the 'one-stop-shop' symphony Upstairs? God's the BigDude, the Owner of ElysianFields, the Grand Prize, the Austere Overdrive, NoPurchaseNecessary: our bombastic tenaCITY on a Hill which'll plant the Seeds 4u2 grow-up to new N greater heights!! Mama mia! Thatsa good pasta!!

CAUTION: our 22ish, avant-guard, accurately-atrocious, offa-the-reservation-like-Jimmy-Hoffa, metal-breadcrumm-fabYOUlishousness R sooo out-of-order, toots, they're an intimate wealth of bottomless sophistication. And dats da fak, Jak. Go ahead. Sue me. Yawn. But, yet, here's the perennial KOO D'TAH: who else has actually SEEN the Great Beyond in spirit & lived to tella youse bout the bionic, bloated, brevity-like-earth we're living on?? Yes, earthling, I had an NDE, almost salivating4salvation. So gain altitude, never attitude: death has no favorites.

If Mr. abSUREditty's an ultra-great-reward, and not everyone enters, Q: why is it an excruciating deluge of epic-.357-caliber where the quality's a limitless bulldozer plowin, pushin-your-power-cord with eternal goodies? A: the Prize-A+-TheEnd just gives U.S. moe-curley-graphix 2 VitSee: an explosion-of-extravagance which few R asking 4 anymore! Grrr. They're too concerned withe grotesque sanity of ambivilant, whorizontal piss-ants which swiftly crawl like lemmings to their scorecard destruction. C'est la guerre.%

THANK GAWWWD!!! the Don has the ebullient BAWLS!!! to do the Manifest Destiny!!! To lead U.S. forward to the White House Upstairs with his SQUARES!!!

So, break-free, earthling; be like a contraversial outgrowth of incredibly-intoxicating-effusiveness in your zeitgeist. Wiseabove. Wanna join this useFULL idiot Upstairs 4 the most zany, kooky, X-acto-knife antidotes? Extremely exquisite, explicit endorphins in abundance? Puh-lenty of pulverizingly-tantalizing psychopathic psychosomatics with eXtras? i2i-kick-velocity's-ass-ultra-maximum-rocket-fuel-party-hardy at my pad ya ever encountered without d'New Joisey accent 4 an eternal slew of precarious, magnanimous & primeval absurdities indelibly etched in the granite corridors of eternity with a total-barrage-of-melt-in-thy-mouth 'depth-of-undenial'???

Make Your Choice -SAW
...cuzz nobody gitts outta here alive, earthling.

2:32 PM  
Blogger kold_kadavr_ flatliner said...

Let this be your catalyst to Seventh-Heaven:

'The more you shall honor Me,
the more I shall bless you'
-the Infant Jesus of Prague
(<- Czech Republic, next to Russia)

Love him or leave him or indifferent...
better lissen to the Don:

If you deny o'er-the-Hillary's evil,
which most whorizontal demokrakkrs do,
you cannot deny Hellfire
which YOU send YOURSELF to.

Yes, earthling, I was an NDE:
the sights were beyond extreme.
Choose Jesus.
You'll be most happy you did.
God bless your indelible soul.

2:33 PM  
Blogger kold_kadavr_ flatliner said...

Let this be your catalyst to Seventh-Heaven:

'The more you shall honor Me,
the more I shall bless you'
-the Infant Jesus of Prague
(<- Czech Republic, next to Russia)

Love him or leave him or indifferent...
better lissen to the Don:

If you deny o'er-the-Hillary's evil,
which most whorizontal demokrakkrs do,
you cannot deny Hellfire
which YOU send YOURSELF to.

Yes, earthling, I was an NDE:
the sights were beyond extreme.
Choose Jesus.
You'll be most happy you did.
God bless your indelible soul.

2:33 PM  
Blogger kold_kadavr_ flatliner said...

Would U please help a plethora of King Size, wildchild, rawkuss wordz which are lookin 4 a home in thy novelty?? Thx. Whew. They're pretty insane. They're bereft of reason. Oi! Blimey! They're bloody PINK spiders!!!

Gotta lotta gobba shrewd, surreal, supersonic, sardonic satires, sassy N savvy elixers N electronic elegance on our YOUTHwitheTRUTH blogs. Wannum? Have'm. N'joym. Gettm outta my hair!!!

How mucha wanna betcha our irrational, hot-shot, fuse-blowin-exploits R a copious madhouse of one lavish bookay? Our proFUSE NRGod who leads U.S. to explosive fairy-tales in the 'one-stop-shop' symphony Upstairs? God's the BigDude, the Owner of ElysianFields, the Grand Prize, the Austere Overdrive, NoPurchaseNecessary: our bombastic tenaCITY on a Hill which'll plant the Seeds 4u2 grow-up to new N greater heights!! Mama mia! Thatsa good pasta!!

CAUTION: our 22ish, avant-guard, accurately-atrocious, offa-the-reservation-like-Jimmy-Hoffa, metal-breadcrumm-fabYOUlishousness R sooo out-of-order, toots, they're an intimate wealth of bottomless sophistication. And dats da fak, Jak. Go ahead. Sue me. Yawn. But, yet, here's the perennial KOO D'TAH: who else has actually SEEN the Great Beyond in spirit & lived to tella youse bout the bionic, bloated, brevity-like-earth we're living on?? Yes, earthling, I had an NDE, almost salivating4salvation. So gain altitude, never attitude: death has no favorites.

If Mr. abSUREditty's an ultra-great-reward, and not everyone enters, Q: why is it an excruciating deluge of epic-.357-caliber where the quality's a limitless bulldozer plowin, pushin-your-power-cord with eternal goodies? A: the Prize-A+-TheEnd just gives U.S. moe-curley-graphix 2 VitSee: an explosion-of-extravagance which few R asking 4 anymore! Grrr. They're too concerned withe grotesque sanity of ambivilant, whorizontal piss-ants which swiftly crawl like lemmings to their scorecard destruction. C'est la guerre.%

THANK GAWWWD!!! the Don has the ebullient BAWLS!!! to do the Manifest Destiny!!! To lead U.S. forward to the White House Upstairs with his SQUARES!!!

So, break-free, earthling; be like a contraversial outgrowth of incredibly-intoxicating-effusiveness in your zeitgeist. Wiseabove. Wanna join this useFULL idiot Upstairs 4 the most zany, kooky, X-acto-knife antidotes? Extremely exquisite, explicit endorphins in abundance? Puh-lenty of pulverizingly-tantalizing psychopathic psychosomatics with eXtras? i2i-kick-velocity's-ass-ultra-maximum-rocket-fuel-party-hardy at my pad ya ever encountered without d'New Joisey accent 4 an eternal slew of precarious, magnanimous & primeval absurdities indelibly etched in the granite corridors of eternity with a total-barrage-of-melt-in-thy-mouth 'depth-of-undenial'???

Make Your Choice -SAW
...cuzz nobody gitts outta here alive, earthling.

2:33 PM  

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