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Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Time Event
12 Sex on a Bed Littered with Moon Rocks
Thad Roberts and his mistress Tiffany Fowler stole $21 million in moon rocks and celebrated by having sex amid them. I cannot convey how much I love that this actually happened. It has made me euphoric, almost manic. I find it nearly impossible to type.
I must have moon rocks.
"Tiffany was equally dynamic—a firecracker and former cheerleader who spoke French in bed and conducted stem cell research on NASA's behalf. Thad wanted her, so when Tiffany begged to hear his idea to liberate the moon rocks, he told her."
"The samples they took were from every Apollo mission, ever. Sometime between the heist and its resolution, Tiffany and Thad arranged the moon rocks on a bed—and had sex amongst them."
14 The Flowing of the Earth; the Slow Blush of the Climate
Friends and neighbors!

I am returning to New York, and though I rejoice to be in your company once again, you who have welcomed me so sweetly and easily, I wish, simultaneously, to order this plane turned around so that I can stay just a little longer with my new lover, my poppet, my Gobi desert.

This letter will be brief, serving only to give the character of the trip, and when we are reunited, my friends, I will have stories to tell that will flesh out this skeleton.

I traveled with two wonderful people: Sydney Sparks, my friend and newly-hired personal assistant, ever composed and staid, yet passionate about the nearly immeasurable, the inexorable flowing of the Earth itself upon itself, and the slow blush of the climate--on the one hand. On the other hand, we had with us Fabienne Lavant, a woman of staggeringly regal indignation matched only by her peerless presence and radiant beauty. Quite the trio!

I spent the trip in a constant state of astonishment and wonder, following Ms. Spark’s footsteps and fingers as if she were a desert-induced vision guiding me to wisdom and water, with Fabienne stumbling after us like a princess who’d escaped the bonds of some brutish Mongol slaver and was quickly losing her patience with the intractability of the desert.

A curious fact: Because Fabienne refused to speak in English, thus never addressing Ms. Sparks; and because, moreover, Ms. Sparks addressed me primarily, I being receptive to her conversation and explanation, it was as if neither woman was aware of the other’s presence--as if they were figments of my imagination, angel and devil, ego and id, and their words were me talking to myself, Fabienne the part of me that appreciates comfort and the finer things in life and protests at every chafe and ache, and Ms. Sparks the part of me that seeks the far reaches of spiritual wilderness, propelled by concerns celestial and terrestrial rather than those of the body. I would hear from behind me, “Quel bordel, Thierry! J’en ai marre de tous ce sable et ce frois glacial!” (“What a bloody mess, Thierry! I’ve had it with all this sand and this freezing cold!”), and in front of me I would hear, “My undergraduate thesis was on climate change in the Gobi and its impact on large-scale geology. The deeper we go, the, like, closer we are to what my research was about,” and I would want to laugh, because of the drama that was being enacted by these voices in my head!

Sometimes we climbed rocks, sometimes we held the lines as Ms. Sparks climbed. Sometimes Fabienne refused to climb until it was pointed out that Ms. Sparks had the water, and then it was fascinating to see how thirst can literally pull a poor soul over massive obstacles and through trembling misery. How proud I was of our dethroned queen Fabienne every time she caught her breath after some effort that left her dewed with cold sweat!

Sometimes we stopped to peer and poke at exposed rocks, and during these moments I tried to be the most perfect student, begging Ms. Sparks to lecture me about what we beheld; She would indulge my curiosity, giving context to the minerals in her inimitable style of speech, which can only be described as majestically American, as I mapped the crystals with my hands, smelled their age, and tasted their complexity. All the while Fabienne posed somewhere under her wide-brimmed hat, never too tired to be striking.

Ms. Spark’s happiness increased as we progressed, until she was brimming with joy and threatened to smile (knowing someone with such mastery over her own body and spirit is to learn to read emotions from the subtlest of cues), and finally we came to a ravine which she held dear in her heart. I, being a man who also holds a certain blasted patch of African bush close to heart, appreciate how attached one can be to particular features of the Earth’s crust. Whoever cannot think of one natural spot on the planet that makes his heart patter and pound, or his breath seize like a falling ribbon caught in a hand, is incomplete.

At one point, our guide--though I use the term loosely, since I considered Ms. Sparks to be our true guide--refused to take us deeper into the desert, where we wished to go. Ms. Sparks was insistent, though when it seemed she would be overruled, I had some words with the gentleman. Happily, he was persuaded, and--

But how could I forget the rock-cooked goat? Ms. Sparks showed me how to use hot rocks to cook goat. It was a dinner I will not soon forget! Even Fabienne was mollified by this feast, though I’m sad to report that Ms. Sparks seemed to be experiencing some discomfort vis-a-vis digesting meat. A shame! May her transition back to vegetarianism by swift and effortless.

There is so much more to say!

I will leave this letter abridged, and end by writing that I wished never to have to cleanse myself of the wonderful dust and the glittering sand; that, were it not for the bitter cold, I could have slipped into that mysterious ravine for the rest of my days, creeping between the lithosphere and the hard blue firmament forever!

But there are duties to attend to. And, more importantly, I miss my sweetheart, and I hope to reunite with her very soon, to trade the scent of sand for the scent of cherry blossom and sleek black hair.

Yours Truly,

15 Playing with Electricity in a Pool

O ___ how weak the flesh! O ______ how frail the bones! O ____ how horrid your stench! O ______ ____ _____ your gibbering goes on and on!

Is now the bill due? Is this my punishment for pursuing Mademoiselle Ren? For prodding Ms. Sparks? Are you lashing back because I have let the mask drop about being more than human?

Or is it what I suspect, that this body is too fragile a conductor of the current I draw from your realms? That is how I feel, how I look: like an electrical cable whose rubber coating has been nearly burned off.

Jesus Fucking Mary, what if it scars?

When my nose is not pouring blood, I smell only one thing: the silicate-calcium-carbonate-iron-iodine and sulfur reek I imagine permeates the superheated waters around hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor. I smell liquid minerals and blood.

I stain all I touch, like a split, rotting plum, like a crushed grenadine. Everything hurts. Every movement hurts. Writing hurts. Bathing hurts. My tongue hurts. Even when I lie perfectly still, my sores are alive and wriggling with those worms that should not be.

The only thing that doesn’t hurt is thinking. That, I can do. Expand the mind. Compartmentalize the mind. With one part of the mind, memorize this diary entry for future records. With another, make progress on the diagrams LelantosTech sent me. With another, plan the clean-up.

Like a snail, I left a trail of slime behind me. The pool needs draining. The patio needs scrubbing. The chaise needs hosing. The carpets and rugs need washing. The sheets need replacing. All very useful things for Letitia to oversee. Give the girl enough work, and she will not have time to ask too many questions. We have read this story before, haven’t we? The ending is the same: You stay busy, busy, busy, and soon the world seems normal again, and all is in its place until it goes inside-out again. I adore her ability to distract herself from with menial tasks from encounters with staggering truths.

Sydney witnessed nothing, I think. Except perhaps the mess. One can never tell what that one notices and thinks. I will have to learn how to distract or otherwise maneuver her.

But, now, Zoe Andrews, what must you be thinking?

The irony of it! In the midst of playing a drowning game, it is me who almost drowns!
16 I am a buoy in a swamp
I am a buoy in a swamp.

I am a water-logged corpse, bloated and partially melted, drifting in murk.

Every so often I float through a bloom of algae to the surface, where I see

Letitia looking down at me. Or Syd. Or maybe some home care nurse.

People’s faces interchange, voices blend.

Syd, or Letitia, says, How much did you take?

Enough! She is cross with me for that answer, scowling. It must be Letitia. Syd doesn’t scowl.

Keep my hand, keep it. The current is taking me. I like the warm current but if it takes me it will be hours before I come back around to you. Don’t let go.

She says tu est dans ton lit, Thierry. You are in bed. Tu est chez toi. You are home.

Don’t let go. I’m sinking again. It’s nice to sink, but I want to say things.

Why won’t she call? Why won’t she write? Where is she among all the party girls and the liberated women? Is my touch toxic?

Je ne comprends rien! she says. Tu parles en allemand. German? Don’t be ridiculous!

Speak French, she says.

I berate her for what feels like an hour before I realize I am in fact addressing her in German.

Letitia, do you understand me now? Am I speaking French? Oui, Thierry. Oui. Vas-y. Go on.

I love her, and I make her sick. Why am I the least bit surprised she has fled, when I yearn to worship her purity as much as I want to drown it in silt and slime?

You think everything is always about you, Thierry, like most men. Maybe she is just heart-broken, or has some obligation unrelated to you. You are such an egotist. An incorrigible egotist.

I confess! Everything you say is true!

You’re speaking in German again, Thierry.

It’s true. I cannot see her as anything but something which is drawn to me or from me repulsed!

Repose toi, she says. Rest. Rest.

Rest? Rest? You tell me to rest? I am rest! I am rest! I am rest given flesh! I am surrender given shape! I am the strangulation of the will and its coronation above all! I am the Earth’s hot clay, clean and dirty all at once, wet as a womb and a rain-soaked grave, warm as a lover’s embrace carrying you off to sleep!

I sink again and come to, how much later? What century is it? Sydney? Sydney?

Tu est reveillé, she says. French, so it must be Letitia. Yes. The one and only. You raved yourself to sleep, she says.

You are good to me, Letitia. Loyal. Steady. Yes, she says. You are immune to my toxicity. Yes, she says. I want Ren. I want the Lady Ren. Yes, she says.

Epouse moi. Marry me.


Marry me, tomorrow. Don’t scoff at me! I’m serious. Marry me. You shake your head and ignore me as if I’m being glib.

Repose toi, Thierry.

Marry me.

Go to sleep, egotist.

That wasn’t a no. Letitia? Hello?


Not you. I know you’re there. You’re always there. Leave me alone.

I want to be alone, tonight.

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