Saturday, January 14, 2006


(1) You are walking down a narrow, windowless corridor. The floor is at an angle, it is a sharp descent. You tread carefully not to lose your balance. At the bottom of the corridor you find a closed door, leading to a large room. As you go in, a girl stamps your hand. The room is full with people, they are all standing, almost motionless. Noise comes from the far end; you make your way through the crowd until you can go no further. Now you can here it clearer: an electronic rustle; slow, rhythmical harmonies, quietly taking over your body; piercing cries of anguish: are you the only one hearing them? everyone around you seems self-absorbed. The room is suddenly rocking from side to side.

Looking through the windows, you can see water on all sides. You realize that this is a boat, and that you are on the river. You find this knowledge comforting; you cling to it, cherish every rocking movement brought by the the waves of passing boats. Through the darkness you can see the glowing blue trees on the other bank, and far in the distance, the evil watchtower; its beacon stabs the night. You find it hard to look, even harder to turn your eyes away.

When the music is over, you walk out, only to find that the corridor is now no longer at a slope. The leveled floor is easier to walk. You step out to the street, where you see two men in space-suits struggling to close a huge tap. You wonder if the pandemic has arrived.

(2) You are sitting on a bench on the South Bank, on the east side of the bridge. It's a cold January day but the sun is shining and it makes the world sweet. You are waiting for your operator. You always meet by the river. He says its safer. You have performed your task, obtained all the necessary information; it was difficult and risky, but you now have it all in your bag. But he is late. The large clock on the other side of the river says it's half past one. You wonder what's happened.
Around you pigeons walk giddily, looking for crumbs. You observe them with greater attention: one has an amputated leg, the other a strange white mohuk. They are all black with soot, miserable looking. Digital cameras snap: London pigeons are easy prey. You turn your face. You must not be photographed.
The bells of the National Theatre are ringing: the intermission's over. It's ten to two. He is never so late. What will you do with the information. Restless, you stand up and lean on the railing. You notice a life buoy drifting on the water, like a orange candy. You follow it as it emerges from the shade under the Bridge, sailing eastwords, to the sea: the tide is going out.


Elizabeth said...

Maybe I'm a bit slow this just a piece of fiction you wrote, or is it a metaphorical version of something you lived?

mink said...

I write in this blog only about my life and my experiences here, but some of them happen in my head or when I sleep.
At the same time I think that when one writes it is always fiction in some sens; I always choose what to tell and to not tell, and in what words to put it , I never 'tell it as it was' coz there's not such thing.