I – iii – A Quest for Things.

| May 29, 2013 | 0 Comments

Finlay listens to overtures from in–patients, Raisin and Park, but bugs before they begin formal exegesis. Sasha Van Etnabaron, awaiting sedulous message, accosted by doxies performing tableaux vivant of Aira Phoebus, avatar of dawn, and medieval Princess Margaret of Austria. Soliloquies of Archangel from the Nicean node Miranda. Aira Phoebus engages fellow (albeit fallen) lumine, iamin’thelim, at Sunrise Cage, wherein are displayed tapestries of Hades and 13th century dinner theatre involving Ptolemaic reconfiguration of universe.

I — iii — A Quest for Things.

“Why must we call her Jung,” Finlay asked, wondering if this question was significant? “Because,” replied their host, “it rhymes with young.” “Oh,” Finlay added, all hopes of interpreting this locale through subconscious symbolism evaporating like a soap bubble as they were led into a greater chamber.
      Every word subsequent [to this arrival] was henceforth borne from a jar. A shaggy discharge of electrification from a thoughtless tap on the brass knob zapped his indices. “Do not drug your feet,” Finlay was told. Reminded in reprimand, Finlay looked upon a vast shower of blue traces. Led up from a depth beyond straying, he was at once beholding the players. Parked before a grand console, she was moping mazurka staves. As upon what step of the general terrace Finlay now stood was of little moment, Finlay must have asked who she was. The owner of the staves did not look up, but continued developing Franck variations.
      The gaze of Flatpop fell upon the other player, prompting Finlay to follow suit. In a bench bay stained with an elegiac photo glaze, the man finished, grimacing, with a guitar. Even as Finlay was counting, the man who knew spoke, “I knew your father.” This effort, moreover, nerved him to resume the chopstick scales. “He’s standing right here,” Finlay retorted. Park transferred his regard to Flatpop. “I knew your father.” Obviously, not news to Finlay’s father, whose reluctant assent prompted Norah to impart an opinion that the players wished to be left. Before they might, Raisin, the other player, announced herself.
      “It wasn’t really quite so simple as one would have let on,” she said, dashing a graying bang from a face so porcelain that Finlay almost wished he hadn’t been voluntarily sterilized. “Thoughts of a powerful happiness seemed fleet,” she said. “To pursue the pursuit, I was moved to play. They were not important notes and yet they were. We offered a way to the witless, shame to the shiftless, the laity a list, and blame to the blameless.”
      “With the evident destiny of hope, borne from without our simple mind,” Park prompted. “Then in the solution,” Raisin went on, “the eventual aim of what was, in the evident destiny of hope, not borne within minds of men, but of angles akin only to us and, in kind sharing a capacity of reasonable thought, we found one morning a span of equidistance.” “We traveled to a time of pre–suppose,” Park explained.
      “Sorry to have barged into here,” Finlay said, “but I think I left my suave discounts on the top shelf.” Finlay digressed, without incident, recalled the matter of the digging doctor outside, and stopped. Providentially, the latter was working far away and paid no heed to anyone. Beside him, Jung stood, shifting her tiny weight from one foot to the other. As Finlay watched, the field beside them turned milky and, in less than a minute, froze to a solid glaze.
      Above, Park, Raisin, and several other residents turned out as Jung, wearing a new set of skates, stepped upon the artificial pond. Finlay watched, for a moment, regretting that he had made such a hasty exit, and sought an invitation to remain, but the inmates, watching diamonds fly from the feet of Jung, nor Iffy, ignored him. Finlay had no choice but to carry out his intent to leave. Flatpop, giving no sign of his thoughts, drove him back to the remnants of civilization in the year 2033.
. . .
Twenty–one years earlier, Van Etnabaron, approaching his fate [the sedulous message, decided elsewhere] felt that he was being too sensitive about things. This he did not love, the practice of moral didacticism, bunched from the transmitting corporate assemblies with persistence sufficient to imbue into everyone, within earshot, a lingering sense of effusive guilt and intrinsic worthlessness for their perceived failure to attain standards of latter day mercantilism. “Why can’t we all believe in matter,” he mulled, not yet over (the disconcerting failure of Marta’s children to appreciate that, at any age, some who had experienced other approaches to deliverance benefited from the burdensome privilege that loomed upwind with needs of being reprehensibly diaphanous) changes of course, expedience, or an ununanimous aptivitude.
      All relationships now accordingly filtered in this light. Meringue’s regard for him was unchallengably solicitous, yet [he saw] her alliterations were those reserved for a troublesome dumpling, too old to abandon and too lumpy to save. That he was now to consider time also flies, as a reminder (after consultation with an inner Zarathustra, certain aspects of rebellion that he had inherently suppressed) sufficed throughout the pact. The imperative to view Marta within a detached conveyance, as a cairn or a second rewind harshened by laundry, if allowing for her as residual a fondness as that evinced for prole laundresses of 1984 only, while retaining his dream of serious co–dependence with a pliant ingenue, led him to overlook responsibilities of his own. Iphgene was off on the opening lap of her apparent victory tour, taking their child with her.
      With no chance of stopping or following her (he sooner would have been dragged before one of those ridiculous village podestas on trumped up charges of insufficient zest, rather than have existed another minute as mute confidante and legal counselor of that complacent old hidalgo who, come to the end of a storied media career, had probably done untoward damage to humanity), the very idea had, in light of Matthieu’s death, and a hoped–for solicitude of benediction, worked to free him to pursue the neglected fancies of his adolescence, fitting the back of his mind with an uncertain yet fleeting comfort.
      Bleakly then, he noticed that the chance of sowing or being smote by more wild oats than ever imaginable approached quickly, for suddenly the restoratives, two women of delightful proportion from quarters unknown, stole into the mud with him with illuminated manuscripts of great renown.
. . .
Aira was just not happy enough. One bucket of sauce finished, she walked away like the neglected ingenue leaving the dance to have a cigar as bystanders recited, “and alas poor youth you are not smiling.” And here was the cognomen, who had to listen to his own ghost stories every night in a stale dumpster, where he lived after he had been released on his own recognizance. Unemotionally he fasted until sunset, ignoring the campfire girls in the foyer. Normally, the characteristically antiquated response to these plights involved illegibly proscriptive repercussions. As the snowshoers crept past his inevitable precept, the cognomen obligingly divulged stipends. Vipers leapt from a can of peanut brittle, for the washroom, as far as the cognomen could see, was in an advanced state of decay. Amidst urinals long clogged a plumbing snake writhed in coils of abandon.
      Since this requisite Medusa held little terror for iamin’thelim, the cognomen, ignoring it, hailed Aira mixing up a new batch of sauce. Offering both elbow macaroni, they paused to admire a floral arrangement before committing each of them into the cage. A final flower sniffed laid open a pie, shuttled into what iamin’thelim had for a face, a last reminder that the Preceptor had fresher fish to fry. Their experience had slipped to a spot where they might turn human, if only for a moment, in order to refresh their memories. iamin’thelim knew that he could grasp the urgency of his task (although one might be forgiven for asking why one might actually care) best in the Sunrise Cage. He had been here before once. Chosen, given sage conduct through, and not departing without reciting aloud the three rules, per se:
1. We will always find pinochle rules in hell.
2. We will reside confidently; what is shown or told will never go down the drain.
3. We will never leave with the one we bring.
. . .
Somehow how else summarily would Miranda bask in tepid solace amid largely orange glaze? Though comme il faut, those unready church–mice, their shrill yelling already abhorrent upon the gerunds, agnosticized the Archangel squinting in a uranium rise. His numbly repressed stink eye regarded inbound vectors nigh kilobits away, giving him slight interval to pace one last time the carefully manicured dodecahedrons endemic to the smallish satellite’s equilateral zone. He was found with jammed skip keys, that infringed node sitar lilt merrily through yikes, as visitants zoomed yesterday imaginable diorama seizures tabled above into a kempt and permeable realm that gleamed enough furor viaducted. Since albeit hugely unison periods of frail lit deemed, much of luminous daybreak measured minute, until anew synchronic septic bursts apparently punted.
      Herald of the insular flop, while yodeled at to procure grants, an anti–disestablishmental factotum steered divinely to the ringless adjutant sphere in knowledge herein of an earlier exacticity. With sleekly casual rummages were such Niceans ubiquitously pervasive, insofar as these were among the sixth short sighted spasmodic antler rebuses amply for irremediate coruscance, and disexual enow reactive in time slurped tidings against darling destiny’s cursed cog which milled over in just cause if sprinkled vixens seemed fewer damp and hopes of ruder imbroglio when. For one who maintained an extrusive hive constantly draped in folds of graphite, this nodal beefeater stared omnisciently through the emblazoned skiagraphy peculiar to his demesne.
      “Those bobbins were too fated to think outside of the wagon–lits conveying them around the shadow of Oberon,” the Archangel stated dourly, fed up with their listless and hollow gazebos. How once had the trapezoidal amphitheaters harbored simpatico, in his one time of plentitude, when they portrayed meaningful dialogues too beneath the crepe noontides when thirds were still surreal, except promptly had their node languished as a hinterland to elsewhere publican outrage. The worst news aloof had antipodes brewed then unto pre–emptive crises, oblivious to their exposed floundering, until all at once lissome gerunds opted to subsume, within less conventional outlets, a hitherto marked disaffection that left this Archangel dismal and bound to greet whatever inter–regnum expatriates with a genial silence thereafter, if deranged toward ruminative slumber.
      Fortuitously, some humongous tapper had left over an entire hogshead of ambergris that he dived into regularly, obviating his desire for trail mix, yet even now, whilst these jejune sixth traipsed about the umber gleanings, he poked his old nose out snifflingly, with a desire that they might be conscientious enough to rebook him into the old haunts that had never totally fled his impetuous yearnings. Attempting to return to a cherished amour propre, a unicycle–cardiogram of the entire universe, the Archangel nonetheless disported queasily as the arrivals clumped about, wishing to question a multi–faceted snowflake that drooped from wires during the silver thaw like granularities incandescent. Accordingly, his elegy would say that the present clutter extolled precocious bains for reaching irrefutable conclusions which they flung into the face of leading opinion, yet during his own time he, if providing similar diversion, to the degree that now these enablers may have clustered around once more but, lacking the patience now, was left to oversee the last viable node left to inter–regnum, and if they didn’t like him failing to take off the dogface now and then they could all go fish for smelts.
. . .
The morning was over. As far as that went, it had not been a bad one, though many previously considered plans had slipped by the wayside in the relentless march of forgetful minutes. Margaret had come to accept that curious solace of confinement, provided moments of certain reflection remained undisturbed from without. After a course of gargling with whorls that barred her escape, one ceased whistling and counted each moment as strength of a rigorous and exacting nature.
      Gifted with perfect liberty, Princess Margaret of Austria found an inability to rest amid surfeits of shells, stones, sticks, combs, quilts, scents, lawn furniture, ivory, apes, cliches, longing gazes, blenders, tickets, silks, and less than vague assurances, and stirred fitfully, waiting for nothing but the end of time perhaps, princess of a lost realm. She wanted the love of one who would perfect her with such thorough indifference that she might finally be able to begin feeling like an actual person.
      This hope resided like a single shard of salt in her commodious bosom, imperishable yet unattainable, mocking her bitterly at night in silence, but her sole comfort, for in her dreams she sometimes saw Noone. All too soon, the day dawned, a leviathan of coercion, dripping schedules, which tended a peripatetic nest of faultless courtiers. In the unfolding cyclotron of eclat, her portion was to lie passively in open fields while all around, regulated by geosynchronous platforms; flares and shuttlecocks whizzed at her. Two hours with the barber, who cunningly sculpted, with non–invasive techniques, the responses that her features were expected to display at planned events of the day, given the financial situation, political climate, and degree of ethnic tension, followed. She received thorough briefings upon these topics over her single two–minute egg shortly after dawn.
      Recreation, also carefully selected according to tastes of the host nation, took up the balance of the morning. A single glance from her tempestuous brow could flatten rows of men like soldiers of a battalion, decimated by artillery, and soon her public appearances experienced a degree of regimentation unannalled since the barged clepsydra first washed up on the Illyrian shore. A solution, advanced from non–traditional quarters, sought to cast her in slightly rigged poses. However, her lithe and supple figure, although sporting a spark plug frame of considerable beam, betrayed anaerobic capacity for lacrosse, rock climbing, and bungee jumping de rigeur. The chamberlain diminished as plenary chaff her favorite sports, gymnastics and equestrianism, and/if permitted two hours a month in each sect, she yearned for more than those few stolen moments of release.
      After lunch, an affair so named in the interest of demonstrating that the household suffered no pretensions to the stuffy obsolescence of parvenu menu formats, Margaret was locked into her study and made to prepare, with delicate Garamond font, hand–written missives to suitors who were the source of deluges of regular esteem rivaling only the tropic showers of the Alban Hills for punctilious and dreadful regularity. Her replies, suitably couched, were purported to contain appreciative sentiments of transitory impact, yet each were as endlessly variable as snowflakes, and the reception of one might cause the suitor to languish for days in an ague of anticipatory triumph, mingled with pathetic displacement, invidious jealousy, hopeless inadequacy, and unfounded assurance until, showing it to all friends and ultimately convinced of its vacuity, the recipient nonetheless emptied his pockets anew to provide further evidence of his warm regard for the next Moxie girl who, unbeknownst to almost anyone, including her own inferiors, managed, on the pretext of assuaging her intrinsic despair by donating her entire trousseau to a vegemite order, to escape all of this for the Throne of Germany.
. . .
Swiftly stated transactions occurred here, where time became reality to these wing beans who had volunteered, or maybe were compelled, to renounce their more ethereal shelves in order to stoop to influence in the cameral world. Now they were found (as persons), with a look that explained everything (or nothing), and Aira approached the concierge. The Sunrise Cage read closed. Mirrored, an iambic intensity of an infinite array of upturned barstools signaled silence like a quarter million Hz. Breaking through the washroom’s Johari window, they conducted, in mute pathos, a why did you bring me here to leave with you can the third rule we wait wait wait in time time time, their exactly light glances were stolen as the cognomen, restively impatient, said, “off we go, then.” Wringing her hand away, Aira flowed from the mise–en–scene and wended through a patch of tables. They slid on silhouette floors and past the bar here a chorus, listening, of confused and sordid rumbling. The cognomen reached out to strip the shower curtain. Aira slapped his hand at the last hissing instant away, her voice foundering.
      It was Snorggi the bouncer. The snoring started. The snoring stopped, and the snoring resumed. The cognomen scratched the hair of his chinny chin. The bouncer’s task, he recalled, encompassed a single purpose. It was not to keep people out, but to keep them in. “Whatever is behind that curtain is asleep,” iamin’thelim added. We don’t wish to awaken it, hon, Aira agreed. The cognomen, unused to enduring time, ripped aside the curtain. Aira screamed, “we praise you O shadow puppet for these thy gifts dispensed in this thy grace unto thy children,” hastily recited, and took the scene into the future, many hours and many folks later.
      Lights whirled instantaneously last gasp toasts while a millenium faded. “Nothing actually happens here,” an angel polishing the glass behind Arabia, who was Tut–and–pish–posh, said. The cognomen resourcefully demanded, “are things dead, Tut–and–pish–posh?” Giddily eons ethically glossed under the counter and blandly addressed the silence, baffling iamin’thelim with retentive gazebos. “We haven’t let anything like this happen in an ice age,” said the former. “I had orders to let only madam past the bouncer.” “And were it all the same you would have not intervened,” the cognomen winked? Tut–and–pish–posh, allowing sentiment to settle, now beamed, “what may I mix for a change?” Aira tugged the cognomen’s elbow, adding, “can we just order from our table?”
      “You most certainly could just order from your table,” Tut–and–pish–posh signaled. A runner vanished into the leveling crowd. The cognomen listened as Aeolus plaid rosily scant themes on the panflute and sang the following square dance call approved for all audiences: “Elsewhere eighth notes skulked in the shadow of Minos’ broom. Greeks who eyed the influx drear of every few who were pleased with their doom. At their little folding tables upon the village dumpster near of each they asked a boon: what book do you wish for your anteroom? Shades tired of being sneezed around in this expostulation solace found a place to dwell ethereally amidst the beloved characters of their halcyon. Some who guessed the scriptures only found plagues and locusts and never mind. Others whom, less read, had no reply returned to zooming on the fly. When I, cast down, and tiring soon of diagramming sentences as a boon to scores of future epistemologists would say, without pause, The First Circle, by Solzhenitsyn, the uchaux, ordinarily nonplussed, would have report that like a sneeze was that retort and hasten to construct the mildest gyve. Thenceforth in banished after life amidst the sultry babushkas cinched would I disport with the final inch.” “The storm in here is beyond reckoning,” the cognomen shouted over a band of marimba settling scores en tiempo.
      The place was half full. A bronzed maitre d’ breasted the crush before them and conducted them to a table behind the band shell, fronded by ferns in the corner where the kitchen god, whose honest wide mouth harbored an isoclinic trap for various by–products of the house specialty, the turbo tofu chiffon marinara, yawned while the concierge arrested Aira’s determined plunge with admonitions that ably remained unclear, yet at her steely glance appointed a bus–person to straitly make away with the previous jetsam before iamin’thelim might proffer any gratuity in return for the speedy favor.
      And during their progress toward the booth, she entreated the former, never blowzier owing to the novel crescendo of indefinite awareness, to “in future similarities please defer to my so–called very inane expedience,” whereas she might enable their dubious blank ubiquity slight, were coeval itinerants in obtuse innocence to set dibs on the mind’s eye. And they fidgeted with their sunny place settings as another dinner theatre arranged their senses.
. . .
The Sicilian Emperor Frederick II had always ascertained that nothing would asseverate the silvery bonds of affectation with his foundling bain. This ledge was too vaguely Titian for almost always–early fabulous reruns, which, underneath the ruby brick boardwalk, leerily spun decibels of a tiny facile vox populi who’d asserted all along that latter day Niceans were fondest of appending personal lapels. Characteristically, Frederick defied sensible premonitions, in so rarely forsaking occasions to bring his heir apparent into the ground floor of his legislative agenda, that the latter was resultantly doomed from this cosseted divulgence as a narcissistic savant invariably set apart from prevalent efficacies.
      Tantamount disapprobation emanating from familial habitues with the ostensible decency oft framed too quietly for some other code moldering in the jalousie, he’d dismissed these admonitions as typical of those unable to desist in the deconstruction of any perceived ambience. They were wont to announce that Noone had failed home school with fewer plates and her entitlement, why do we sell out to inner gurus in order to stem rage caused by wanting what others did not have, was not an imaginative proposal. “We’re being too in–house with haunted cultural archetypes, so obstinate was the period,” that irregardlessly affluent of his typically vacant rebus, omeletted together, albeit joltingly sparse, and widely viewed as nascent, blobby crumpets shy with namesake articles merrily onyx zigzagged thither, dialed in as plain aside as the Noses of Snorggi.
      Hereupon splenetic seconds (handsome blokes which amplified far feyer carillons than any warbled ad lib risks of still warmed over snot) habitually certified adjustments too here for you to ever leave the house. Then whomever bluntly cegenated finth marred odes to ape arid oxymorons reaped inkily, this moreover incensed clevis brittly forked tuneless codas extolling reversion to a pre–Ptolemaic solar conjangulation. At 11:61 AM (Reconfigured Universal Time) on December 21, 2012, Neptune was in conjugation with the sun, Uranus was in occultation with the moon, Saturn was at its greatest elongation, Jupiter was five degrees north of Pollux, Mars’ smelliest satellite had disappeared, the Earth was at opposition, Venus was in retrograde motion, and Mercury had not risen.
      Ten to the minus forty–three seconds elapsed, skipping across the pons asinorum as if it were the width of a baby’s breath, and when freaked dust mice had been run out of the joint, Mercury had still not risen, Venus was two degrees east of Eden, Saturn was in reentrant conjunction, Jupiter had aligned with Mars, Neptune hovered at aphelion, and Earth basked as the nucleus to billions of pin–wheeling galacticities. Inhabitants had hardly time to commemorate their newfound geocentricity in a series of postal glassines when word arrived that Pluto, whose impedimential deviance had been ameliorated by altruistic Niceans, now conglomerated in a gargantuan snowflake of meteoric immensity, returned to the fold, and in defiance of an ICA motion to grandfather its planetary status, had nudged Uranus toward a keyhole long hypothesized as critical focal point for any celestial object in imminent collision with Earth. Liberal opinion gave them fewer than twenty–one years to get out of there.
      “Someday all of this will be yours,” Frederick told his son Henry VII), and left to pursue his courtship with the exonerated Isabelle of England. Henry’s first act as finis coronat opus was to reverse his kingdom’s traditional policy of hostility to continental drift and, as a sop to the intellectual hairs of the Village Server, grudgingly accede to the flotation of the lithiwatt as potential coin at the opening of the Antwerp Bourse on the Feast of St. Swithin’s Day eight centuries later. In name only, a hypothetical legacy thus lurched athwart the FM dial upon which individuals had never learned to shut up since 1971. This action was merely the harbinger of events landing the Hohenstaufen family in such a pickle, and as the Sicilian nobility gathered upon the palazzo at Gaeta overlooking the cerulean Ponzi Islands, Frederick pondered methods of chastening his recreant scion, just as soon as he returned from the next Crusade.

Category: Act I Revised Ed.

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