memories of place | cotton smocks in moonlight

memories of place | cotton smocks in moonlight

a tyranny of costume
an ode to the spirit of the city| berlin | venice |

the old one
the pale one
the fragile one
the naked one
the beautiful one
the shrunken one
the proud one
the disgusted one
the lost one

They all stand there. Looking at you. Looking at her. You can only see one, but there are more, characters swirling her being, encasing her in dangerous liaisons which you cannot comprehend.

She moves softly at first, graceful in her distain for the texture of the plastic floor. Her arms are quilted in soft hair which catches the light. Her eyes are piercing, deep blue in their sorrow, you cannot afford to look away for fear she may depart into the cold night air, treading the snow in your worn slippers. But they are not yours, she is not yours.

Your eyes wander, staring for a moment at the bright neon light. Your gaze returns and she has, as you knew she would, departed.

Now stands something more fierce, more fragile. Eyes raging black. The plastic floor seems to melt now in an insatiable heat. Cotton smocks replaced by coarse silk in an attempt to represent the changing form. The lady now is here, you are drawn once again to wonder the possibilities, the touch, the smell, the burning asphalt.

Fleeting glimpses, relentless in their arrival and departure, a new costume for each act, you are undecided as to who they are or what they may mean, consumed in the potential for reflection. Her attires are like skins which she cannot help but shed with the passing light, endless transformation, but no conclusion can be morphed from such state of disrepair.

She sits, silent now, in the half light at a white table, her hair tumbles in the nauseas breezes which try in vain to change such stale air. She tries with a biro, no ink, a quill, no nib, a typewriter, no reel, a computer, no battery, to notate all these souls who pass her path, dreary in their presence. Her voice is a silent one, taking words only in these characters she can impress on you.

Such changes are seamless; you stand with a net trying to capture each spirit which flies. The net of course has holes in and in a calamity, the fight to imagine such beauty is lost to the endless swarm of transitions she morphs.

You stand now. motionless, the passive spectator to such endeavour, injecting, pausing, trying to reason, to clarify, to enable, to explore these states you observe and catch like butterflies in glass jars and screw the tin caps on so tight, so their beauty, remains momentary, but pure. You alert “its performance; I can see them” gesturing to the room you keep locked filled with empty sealed glass jars.

She has disappeared from the room once again, you are alone, as perhaps has always been, watching the neon light and the piles of endless costumes and attires she calls her voice.

In such fabrics, she remains, taunting the tense clammy air.

Walk now to the forest; depart through the endless asphalt planes. Follow a glimpse of her cloaked shadow as its darts behind the continuous sea of battlements you may name as towers. Notice the textures you may pass with bare bleeding feet. “It may take a life time to leave” but the voyage continues, the forest remaining a distant memory which in hope you grasp.

She is there, waiting, in an another new mode.

She does not wait for you, rather she awaits the passing of time, swaying in her frame to the endless dron of the internal clock as her skin shreds and her face may become old. She, as you, watches the time pass, filling each moment with constructions which are neither dissimilar or similar to your own. Entwining away from the drone of the city, you both lay wait.

You have lost form; watching her own as it seems to take all the place that may exist there. You have no shadow here.

the broken one
the lost one
the strong one
the hurt one
the sad one
the lonely one

She stands now, dressed in mud, her hair tangled now with birch branches, the moon allows her pale demure to form an imprint on this new terrain. Powerless, you watch. The characters can repeat and can dissipate; she marks no shift in their being, no motion for a new act, seamless in a sea of new arrivals which mask her form.

Her departures and costumes litter your mind, she will leave the forest for the glaring darting mass of lights we call the city; you lose her as she runs through endless trees, still the glimpses of changing form will haunt you. You collect her discarded clothes into a suitcase for hope they may in some distant life be worn again by her aging form.

Arriving once again to a city foreign yet familiar the search continues through the gloaming down narrow streets. Echoes of daily routine and monotonous play will fade, as silent as her voice.

She stands now, pausing to admire her reflection in the glass. Unsure as to histories, pastness or even the lines on her own hand. She dresses again, fine stitching and delicate and broken shoes; leaving another pile of discarded memories where she stood.

You stand now in a room with a neon light, the characters lurk limply in the suitcase you hold in vain; wishing her body to fill them once again with strength and comedy. The room is filled again;

the fragile one.

~ by beatricejarvis on January 11, 2011.

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