Wednesday, August 29, 2012

LIKE SWIMMING THROUGH VISCOUS JADE

I am filled with a slow warm ennui. The house is quiet. Life-Eaters slumber. Edith slumbers too. My body floats between sleep and wakefulness. I fill a chair... a mohair club chair...placed in a sunbeam dancing into this den of vampires. 

But the 'lady' is still here. She tastes the air and licks the walls. I do not know what comprises the diet of all powerful (or almost all powerful) demi-goddesses. Apparently it is not generic raisin bran, for the bowl left as offering remains untouched. 

She waits for Papa. Madam Shang grows impatient. And I know she swirls about his body in the cubicle. But she wants him whole and awake. What plans (other than her own deep pleasure) I do not know. Humans and night-folk are as puppets to her. 

In the past, she and her kind manipulated kingdoms. They played Risk with actual thrones, both here, on the blue orb and on other worlds as well. I am told  (via chattering ghosts) she has enemies in The Seven Sisters. And please know I speak of stars and not some female colleges.

It is odd living with vampires. Toilet paper lasts forever. Orange juice does too. But they know Tomas in the market. He likes it that way. Seems more natural. He buys take-out hoagies for the homeless and distributes them to those encamped on steam vents. But during summer he  does not find them there, for they hide amidst the shadows of cool, dim arcades. 

I hear faint songs escaping from Annie's cubicle. Perhaps from her IPod or the television. She has a small one mounted on the wall and often falls asleep to MTV.

We think about the ghoulish one. We think about Johnny Jump Up. Tomas means to make the rounds. He means to visit caretakers. Cemetery caretakers, I mean. Sometimes they catch sight of him. He burrows in all over. Months go by without an attack. Years...and then this....... Maybe it's Madam Shang's doing. 

It's funny the way you hide from magic. Why does it scare you so? It's just a force...an intelligent force, though minus any discreet, easily discernible identity..... A nebulous, universal presence..... Not God..... Not demon.....benign and unattached. 

Do I dip my hand in the enchanted ethers?.... No, I don't. Not to this point. But I am considering it......  I spoke  to the air once. It was at a bingo game....a big bingo game sponsored by a casino in Atlantic City. Three thousand people filled the room.....the last game.... the cover all...... after thirty eight numbers I waited for one..... 38. And I asked the air dancing between the numeral inscribed ping pong balls to find it for me...... I asked reverently and politely.....And the air, cognizant of my sincere desire, obliged..... Three heartbeats later he found it. The caller found it and in a loud voice he said 'thirty eight!'........ I said - Bingo! and left ten thousand dollars the richer. 

Most cover alls run to fifty five numbers. Some even more. But that night was different. And I felt magic for the very first time.

Now, where is the Wassa crisp bread, for I am hungry. I hope we still have butter...

Oh, look! What luck!

(switches on a built-in stereo system...and the kitchen fills with Jiminy Cricket singing - When you wish upon a star, makes no difference who you are, anything your heart desires can come to you...).... Then he butters the crisp bread, sits down by the island and eats....

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