I HAVE BEEN HERE BEFORE

by angeliska on July 21, 2004

I am dreaming:

It is night. I am sitting on the stone steps of a large and gracious manse- overlooking sweeping lawns hung with oak branches. I am reading a book, and wearing black underwear. A girl comes out and sits beside me. She comments that there is a crew of unruly youths who seem to be trying to attract my attention with repeated shouts of, “Catwoman! Hey, Catwoman!”. Which, apparently is a reference to my black underwear. I shrug, and go back to my book.

The girl nudges me again. I look up, distracted and slightly harried by this point, only to be met with the most intense dream-spectacle I have ever witnessed:

A cyclone of a circus has unfolded silently on the lawns before me. The roar of the animals and undulating, writhing activity of the scene is beyond organic- it has become a weather pattern. All the animals are a dirty white, grotesque, and utterly without sound- save for a dull humming. A white elephant, ears veined pink rears up directly in front of me- a ghostly challenger. White tigers and albino peacocks gambol about the ring. A polar bear wiggles and spins, dancing as if impaled on a spit- red mouth and yellowed teeth gaping. The sky is not quite dead-white, but more nacreous- pinky grey fish scales or petals shifting in the haze. Oil towers loom in the distance, all is dust. This is the midwestern nightmare- a monstrous carnival sapped of colour. This is where the white tornadoes come from. It was exactly as if I had stepped into one of ‘s paintings. The sky looked like this:

But I stepped inside it. Terrifying. It moved. It was talking to me.

Somehow I end up in a German steel mine,
thousands of miles beneath the surface of the earth.
It is a secret project.
Refugees, immigrants and gypsies all work the mine,
and I suppose I am one of them.
The enormous hydraulics system
runs perpetually in the Zigeuner-Kobold Mine.

I have a feeling that reading
“The Infernal Desire Machines of Doctor Hoffman”
(perhaps the only book by Angela Carter that I have not yet read..)
while in a fever-fueled delirium
of sudden illness surely brought on by
my hard-livin’ ways,
massive overexcitement of the humors
and this utterly diabolical heat
could have something to do
with such fantastical dreams, eh?

Also- I require immediate decapitation.
My skull had become so suffused with mucus
that I am no longer able to perform simple human functions.
I am now merely a hacking, sweating,
twitching, spitting shell of my former self.
I demand to be cryogenically preserved
in a glass coffin until at least October.
With a blue light on inside- you can keep it
in the corner of your room and
sing me songs when you can’t sleep.

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