Sunday, September 30, 2012

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Contact Low Redux [found, unedited]

While on the train, digging through some files I had tossed indiscriminately on my iPad, I came across a prose "novelization" of a comic I originally wrote/drew in 2005 as my submission to the True Porn 2 anthology (It was rejected, by the way. I think for not being "porny" enough). The "created on" date of the prose version is from January 2005, which is the same year the comic was made, so I think I drafted them concurrently. At any rate, below is an unedited excerpt of the piece. There are a number of tense shift issues that need to be repaired (It shifts repeatedly between past and present. I prefer the present tense). I may spend some time re-working/expanding it for submission somewhere.

[If you haven't seen it, you can check out the comic version, which I have posted previously, here]

The contact low.
By mykl g sivak

“Do you hear the snow against the window-panes, Kitty? How nice and soft it sounds! Just as if someone was kissing the window all over outside.  I wonder if the snow LOVES the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, ‘go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.’ And when they wake up in the summer, Kitty, they dress themselves all in green, and dance about- whenever the wind blows- oh, that’s very pretty!” cried Alice…”And I do so WISH it was true! I’m sure the woods look sleepy in the autumn, when the leaves are getting brown."

-Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass

Chapter One.

A series of loosely connected events interconnected perhaps only in that they occurred consecutively, in close proximity of one another in time. Or perhaps, they are more connected than that. Like the individual cards of a toppled card structure, each floating down to the floor. Relying not only upon their respective interactions with each other, but also, their interactions with the forces that surround them.

But I’m automatic. My body runs like clockwork, though my mind is fumbling clumsy.  These cells function independently, yet their needs and appetites are expressed to me somehow, and my psyche bends to fulfill their requirements.  I eat for them, drink for them, hunt for them, and fuck for them. And my mind squirms to stay ignorant of this fact.  I am one whole, an organism not an ecosystem.  My heartache is my own.  My pain is my own.  Not caused by some protoplasmic urge.  I am at one with myself, not ourselves.  Stupidity, fear, and egotism cause my blunders.  Evolution has created me, but now I exist as something beyond evolution. The first “whole” in a long line of amalgamated parts.

These rabbits are running forever.

The Old Church steeple stood above the rooftops, perfect beyond the rows of tilting slanted city walls. The steeple did not tumble, nor did the buildings, but those houses made of cards began to tumble, fall down all around me as I walked between them.  Out from their bases white rabbits fled, darting past me, around me, through my legs and I watched as they disappeared, one by one, down the crooked alleyways, diving like kingfishers into the canals. In fact the motion of their fleeing seemed more like that of birds, and it was hard to tell if they weren’t in fact flying, for it was uncertain if their feet were at all touching the ground.

I walked and the cards tumbled, I walked on unscathed, either unaware of the danger, the razor thin edges, the indiscriminate collapse, or perhaps I did not care, perhaps I had accepted this turn of events, and had chosen to let the cards fall as they may (as it were).

But not a card hit me, and though I could see them at the corner of my eye, falling flat against the wet pavement in my peripheral, I did not turn around to glimpse the chaos that lay behind me.  I watched my feet, and merely walked on.

In a moment she was staring at me, smiling, her soft round buttocks peeking out from beneath the short hem of her pink cotton gym shorts. A white and pink braided sweatband tucked beneath her curled blonde bangs, her loose blonde ponytail.  She was smiling and her blue eyes were sparkling, and though she held a large iron dumbbell, her skin looked as dry and smooth as talc.  She wore a thin white tank top stretched tight between her arcing back and ample swollen breasts, her nipples pushing out before her, her cleavage spilling over above the shirt’s neckline.  She stared back into my eyes and smiled with innocence and purity.

I felt a smile tugging at the corner of my lips, but regained my passivity with the knowledge of her illusion.

“Dude,” the voice behind me spoke. It was the voice of a young man, phlegmy, with the trace of some emotion I could not immediately identify.

“That’s the last card.”

I looked up, saw the scruffy, unshaven visage of Muybridge the American. And then I knew where I was.  Muybridge was my age, perhaps a few years my senior and a fellow border at Bob’s Youth Hostel.

“I’m sorry,” I said, attempting to hand over the naked lady playing card. But he pushed my hand away without touching it.

“That’s okay,” he said. “Put it on.”

He motioned with his hand to the table, and I turned to look and saw the elaborate architectural edifice he and the rest of us had constructed out of playing cards. It must have taken 30 decks.

‘No,” I said. “You do it. It’s your design.”

“No, no,” said Muybridge, pinching the bridge of his nose beneath where his ovular wire rimmed glasses sat. “You’ve got the card. You put it on.”

I looked at the composition, the hundreds of cards perched precariously upon one another. ‘I’m not up to this,” I thought.  I was shaking, or felt like I was, and I sensed the small beads of sweat forming along my hairline and upon my upper lip.

“This room is filled with marijuana smoke. I’ve been drinking beer,” I thought. “I’m not up to this. I can’t do it.”

What happened next is predictable.  The cards came tumbling down all around me.  When they all had fallen, I sat back in my seat, still holding the final card. She was still smiling at me.  She knew I had tried my best.

“That’s alright,” said Muybridge. “We can rebuild. Besides, I was getting a little sick of card architecture anyhow. What do you say we go check out some hookers.”

We walk down city streets. The streets of Amsterdam.
There are animals, pigs dressed as men walking around us, and in my peripheral, I swear I spot vague small white shadows, with ears like rabbits darting in and out of the alleyways, darting behind us as we walk.

Grown men and women behind drawn curtains, inside human-sized terrariums. Well-dressed men, apolitical and unscientific, lick the very breasts upon which small babies have been weaned.  Thousands of gallons of semen spilled and swallowed within the structures of these streets, have held the genetic coding, the evolutionary blueprint of the modern human pervert, and sperms have shriveled squirming in dirty carpeting beneath hard stiletto heels.

Fingers tracing penises, vulvas, scrotums and vaginas, without consideration of the womb, the ovary, the vas diferens.

And I become all too aware that my weak ironic gesture, the soviet hammer and sickle emblazoned across my chest, dissolves into the stark caustic reality of the lives of these women whose lives surround me; their unnamed sorrow humming out from the glowing red windows of these streets and alleyways; their souls, seeds that fell upon the unfertile soil of the former soviet bloc, found purchase there, and grew to weak and weary seedlings.

Muybridge, the American, speaks. “Its weird.” “Makes me feel like I’m walking through some sort of fucked up city zoo.” “You know, that vague nagging unspecific guilt?” “Like I’m doing something wrong by just being here.” “Like, I’m supporting something entirely fucked up and unnatural.”

To which I reply: “It doesn’t even feel real.” “It’s like we’re in a movie set or something.” “Or those world nations exhibits at Epcot Center.

Muybridge responds: “Yeah. But not as fucked up.”
Then adds: “still…I suppose its better than the alternatives.” “But all in all, all the Dutch have done is replaced pimps with landlords and tax accountants.  Any way you look at it its bureaucracy.”

In an instant the prostitute’s hands are at my throat, gripping my scarf. Her long cherry red fingernails are inches from my jugular, beneath her nails thousands of bacteria teem and hum.

“Come inside, come inside!” she shouts, pulling me by the neck ever closer to her box.
“Hey lady!” Shouts Muybridge. “Hands off.”
But she keeps pulling me, not loosing her grip.
“Come inside,” She yells through gapped toothed smile and fat wet crimson lips. Her heaving fat brown breasts pouring out from the hot pink bikini top. “Come inside just talk!”

“I don’t think so,” I say. “I’m not interested.” I’d only come to window shop.

Muybridge slaps her arm and shouts with spit flying, “Bitch! Let go! The man said ‘NO,’ Christ!”

And she shuts up. Says nothing. And we walk away, back down the narrow alleyway from whence we’d come. And as I think of it now there is the image of sperms, being propelled out through a narrow flesh corridor to be expelled with force out into the hopeless future.

Back on the main street, beside the canal, Muybridge speaks: “I’ve had about enough of this. What say we head on back to the hostel? I could use a joint, and we could try rebuilding that card condominium that you fucking knocked over.”

Later he speaks again: “How about when we get back to Bub’s, you let me roll you a big fat joint?”

“No thanks,” I reply.

He continues: “I don’t get it, dude. You come all the way to Amsterdam from wherever the fuck it is you come from, and you don’t even take advantage of the lenient drug laws.”

I reply: “yeah, well…”
Muybridge: “You coming inside or what?”
Me: “I think I’m gonna wander around for a little bit.”
Muybridge: “Alright, dude. Suit yourself.”

And then the snowflakes begin to fall. Like finely granulated sugar, beautiful and crystalline. The city is so quiet now; I can hear each flake as it smashed against the street infinitesimally.

Some quick Stimpies