Monday, August 07, 2006

Towers of London

Drinking beer on the roof of the estate, following London's towers anti-clockwise: the Evil Towers, their shining pulse blinking you into submission; the Gherkin; the Elephant tower blocks; the Budhist tower of silence, the Big Ben, and Parliament; the tower of moving eyes; and finally, Mr. Man's tower, the nest of ruinists. In a city so horizontal, the towers stand like giant sentries. One day I will write more about them.

They were talking about cities in the Amazon: Belem and Manuas, former centres of unimaginable wealth, acquired through the rubber trade. European mansions and opera houses in the Amazon basin: it was quicker to get on the boat to England than to cross the mountains to Lima. A late Colonial folly, ending suddenly as it begun, when the British stole the trees and took the operation to Malasya. And now all that remains is lost splendour in the jungle. Herzog filmed Aguirre, the Wrath of God there; I have to see it yet.

Night had fallen. A fair-haired woman was teaching her child to call the star by name, in Finnish: Tahti, she pointed up, Tahti
Ta-ti said the girl.
Tah-ti, said the woman.

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