Saturday, October 29, 2005

cocksure and crazy (a misrepresentation)

When did success happen? Has it yet? It wasn't the moment of first publication. No, certainly not then. If it has happened, and, indeed, you wanted to mark the point of its happening, then perhaps you would choose the acquisition, no, the developing of a critic. "Developing," you mutter under your breath, and laugh a little to yourself. Developing, as though you played a major part in the critic's springing forth into existence. And perhaps you did. For without your words, and the words of other's, the critic's life is a fairly purposeless one.

Tonight, a party. The clinking of glasses filled with absurd alcoholic concoctions, pretty and pink. Lame jokes and affected laughter falling flat in opaque air. What do you do? is the question on everyone's lips. You make up a name, and tell them you're a labourer - and it isn't far from the truth. Words don't come easily these days, and there will be no talk of them tonight. A suspicious eye tries to squint beneath the slender arch of an over-plucked eyebrow. The beast's collagen pumped lips part slightly. "What type of labour?" it purrs. "General," you answer. The beast tries to smile, but can't for the botox. Or maybe it never learnt how. Smiling is unique to humans, after all.

In the washroom, now. You're comfortable here, with the party little more than a barely audible hoo-ha through the wall. Just you and the bass line. Leaning against the inside of a stall, staring down at the toilet and the floor, you're thinking about all the coke that's been snorted in this very space. Shit, there's probably enough for a line right there between the ceramic tiles. How many times has the same scene played out here? Fine white powder, chopped up with a platinum card on a cigaret pack. Sliced into a line. The careful rolling of a twenty. Breathe in, nice and natch. Feel the drip, taste it, acerbic, medicinal. The packet of posh slipped back into pocket. A stretch and an exit. A confident re-entry, a seamless shuffling of one into many. But this isn't you. No, not anymore.

You - you'll slip out of the washroom and through the back door. Wary of the searching eyes of beasts. Fearful of their veneered snarl. Outside, you'll loosen your tie, and shrug out of your coat despite the cold. Metamorphosis. Like a butterfly breaking free of its cocoon. Following this, there's the scene consisting of a lonely cab ride home. A searching of city lights, the same lights which called to you in youth, and those same lights with which you've since grown disenchanted. When did success happen? Has it yet? Is this it? You were promised more - weren't you? The critic, he lives a good life. One of waiting and dismantling; easy things. Right now, he's at home sleeping peacefully, a smile on his face. Tonight he dreams of your next work. For him, it's already written. For you, there's still so much work to be done - and it won't get done like this.

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