So, Schlieman had died again. And the quest/question for me has again become: if he has indeed now died in Japan, how has he managed to describe his own death? Schlieman has obviously never existed.
He was a character in a novel. Very simple really. But written by whom? And was/is he or she still writing it? I had asked myself this question many times, but now it felt more urgent. Fiction becomes Infinity ... his words. I would give myself 'til the end of the week. I brought out the TV from under the stairs ... which, alas, proved almost fatal! A French film directed by Christian Chaudet on BBC2: "The Nightingale", which recently won the first prize in The Golden Prague festival in the Czech Republic, the only TV festival devoted entirely to music. Stravinsky's Opera in a unique new setting: not in the Emperor's palace but a Chinese Porcelain kiln. "The film transforms a little boy's dreams into a post-modern landscape inhabited by China vases and lanterns but also laptops and mobile phones."
Of course, for me, it was an entirely different experience than for any other observer who happened to watch the program. For me the setting was a Japanese Porcelain Kiln. Not far from Yuzawa.
Humbled by the voice of the soprano and the music, I found it disquieting that I might otherwise not have bothered to watch it. I don't much like Stravinsky, anyway, except his 'Oedipus Rex' and 'Persephone'. I'd not have bothered but for MS's reference to the 'subject'. One lives and learns ... as the cliché goes. I made a VHS tape of the opera. One day I would find someone to share it with. Maybe a Chinese girl without the name Yoko.
Later I returned to the lure of the nohzone labyrinth ... I was getting nowhere, when, in the space of a few minutes (between twice looking into it, to be sure) a new name popped into one of the two remaining empty lozenges on the map: pillow book.
Clicking on it I was brought to a further chapter of the tale:
Her book unread on his table ... her knickers on the floor by the side of the bed ... they had met a few times and exchanged mental and emotional documents, memories, dreams, texts ... and he had loved her in a cautious modest kind of a way ... she had aroused a certain tenderness in him ... one of his brighter students ... until she had decided to take fate into her own hands. His fate. She would collect her book later no doubt ... but not before the birds had read it.
Miyako's Pillow Book ...
Zeami exiled to the island of Sado!
Aru ga mama
I was amused to find the following sentence underlined in red in Michael's book of translated Noh plays.
The two sisters of Matsukaze are imaginary
but you can visit their graves.
A stele bears the names of the two sisters.
The names of the gravestones face towards Miyako.
The graveyard is on the outskirts of Kobe, near the sea,
where Yukihira is said to have lived.
Thoughts as they come. As I come, only ever without thoughts; to avoid thinking is to come. Of what has passed or coming, or is to come.
Dream follows dream on borrowed pillows ...
I do everything for myself. Autophony
Yet I (feel I) do not exist
A confession of sorts, revealing someone I do not know, to myself, whom I don't wish to know; an account of what I must (and most) mistrust about myself. My love for Yoko.
I am always my subject. How touch the subject if in the Japanese language we never specify person, verbs do not specify person or number, nouns have no plural form? Being bilingual (my fate, my curse - not as harmful as Yoko with her hatred of her half-caste racial genes) I barely notice such things. How I hate that word the English use all the time: 'things' - something anything nothing ...
She and I, two tongues born of one snake. The subject of a verb impossible to determine with certainty, the self eroding at the edges, dissolving into landscape. In our traditional texts even the names (endless, endlessly) change - with the seasons. The spring self (in love) a dissimilar self to that of summer, autumn, winter. Once we were all nature's children. I never loved anyone except her.
Différance as a way of thinking as well as writing.
The conference. Its elusive subject (which no-one seems to have noticed) is the Pariah Self as Subject - the 'shishosetsu' novelist trying to discover, reveal, assert SUBJECT, using a language which brutally refuses to assert a subject with any certainty whatsoever.
Failing to carry water in a basket. Not noticing until the journey is over. Where did all the water go? It froze, became snow, was lost, scattered like seeds through basket-ware. Not easy to imagine how a frog sees a fly. Or how I always saw Yoko, foresaw our fate, she and I.
Life has no need of a subject; act, see, fuck; the 'self' as the product of culture, the cult of culture: culture cult-ivates detachment from the true nature of the self. From nature, itself. It-self. At one with nature. Atone for the self. Now we are at-two with nature; twice removed, and worse. Atonement. Yoko will die and it will be my fault but she will have brought it upon herself; the final scene of the novel. His novel. My novel. Dreams that have caged my soul and my destiny.
Could Buddhism have come into being without opium? Is it not the inviolate idiom of the opiate dream? The ego dissolving away. Awake but asleep. Dream. Cyclic time. The universe a vast galactic-strewn web (interlocking virtual looms of meaning and non-meaning, quantum chaos) of coincidence. Buddhism trying (in vain) to embody irreconcilable polarities and paradoxes. To embrace it absolutely (in vanity) is to choose a subtle form of madness; becoming alien to one's natural being. How to contain such madness? Easy enough! As we girls are still taught? At least here in the country. AVOID FEELING. Avoid affect. And also, as I have discovered - avoid love.
In Noh plays it is invariably woman (dancing girl - whore - poetess) who is presented as truly mad - KYO we call this category of Noh plays; such as Yoko's favourite 'Pining Wind'. But the mad woman, through her 'madness' (her anarchic refusal to bow down, obey) can access and reveal higher truths. She initiates the confused pilgrim, priest, wanderer. Where am I, who am I, why is this tree being worshipped, who is this ugly old woman with no teeth from whose mouth comes the words of a goddess? Her magic wand, her Catalpo Bow. Shamanism. Eat the drug and lift off, fly, leave behind all 'things' ... and the curse of attachment.
Thinking the double. Becoming a double text. As with: The two sisters. Buddhism, a multi-layered plagiarism and annihilation of monotheism, a subtle subversion of the rational. Only by 'Confession' - Zange - can the Buddhist exhaust attachment.
The despair, the madness of Confessional Novels: Who am I, where am I, why have I murdered the girl I love? The soul? My own soul? Those of Kawabata and Tanizaki especially.
Why am I here at this wretched conference?
My proposed thesis: to prove that Kawabata's "Snow Country" used the Noh play "Pining Wind" as its seed-text. A novel in which he arrogantly callously destroys the heroine, the lovely Komako.
I will write Komako's Confessions. Accused of feeling and acting ' above her station'; foolish enough, silly girl, to imagine her love can be returned. But why did she want to sacrifice her beautiful young friend Yoko to Shimamura, as well, if she was a victim herself of his callous womanising? To create the double text? To be the subject and object in the act of love, simultaneously? To turn herself on! Woman! A child is being beaten ...
No man will sanction my thesis. There are truths that men cannot accept about women without becoming mad. Better to say it is women who are mad. We are those, they say, who must live inside the bronze bell, deafened by its motion; or the glass Bell Jar. Blinded by light. Men create their poetry, 'this is my pain'; at woman's hands. Wounded pride!
The Noh play "Pining Wind", seeded by a story in "The Tales of Genji". (Qv) Texts copulating with texts, inter-breeding texts, cultural DNA; against nature. Genji's dream of making love to the two girls at once - is the essence of the Uji chapter. He wants them both. Because he is a pilgrim searching a higher truth - l'homme double? We forgive him because we know that to live as such is to be doomed to permanent frustration. Reconciling love, desire and beauty? An impossible wholly unholy trilogy! Falling into the spaces between. And not only their double pair of legs, four luscious lips, the touch of the other's body (bodies) arresting the fall into infinite space. The brothel.
Yoko and I, the two girls. But I was in love with Yoko; in love with her decadent depraved virginity!
But Genji's love of the two girls also became the fate of Yukihira. He is also exiled to Suma beach overlooking the troubled waters between the land and the island of Sado ... a final exile. Qv: Zeami, the author of the play, he too was exiled to Sado! Always EXILE - the 'self' created always and only in and through EXILE - severed from roots - the artist must be in exile in order to fill the space created between himself and meaning, by irony (to be in a space that is a no-place, a void between reality and imagining) with his work. The pilgrim lives in a shifting exile, seeking the other, the promise of wholeness, roots, return, recognition - a moment's elevation (l'élève - the student) of belonging: qv the story of the Noh play "Eguchi": the Pilgrim Eguchi and the Whore. Fucking and loving the two girls at once. As one. They are fused by being fucked together. The goddess who is also the whore. The sacred prostitute, priestess of the goddess who confers the ultimate truth of her mysteries to the lover.
The love of the two sisters suggests allusion to the poet pilgrim Narihira (repeating Zeami and his exile to Sado); inner or outer exile the starting point of every writer's quest. The end of the quest is arriving, belonging - but to what? Ithaka? Yes, no. No, into the womb of the angel of death. The crucible of re-becoming ...
Love, love everywhere ... it must be the Sorcery of the Lake. A white bird with a flower in its beak is YUGEN ... (Michael's albatross?). Fear of falling into love, into the Oceanic. The haunt, the glade, the grotto of the womb/vagina. From that haunt, man moves out in peril towards permanent exile. Spume on the waves. Tears (and tears) on the torn page. Love is only felt with its full passionate aura (loss) in exile. Ecstasy of union is the beginning of fear, of the next coming loss. The plot. What can man do but dream of being in permanent copulation with his other? His prick in her cunt? The Milky Way, symbol of the dog in the anus of the bitch. In REM sleep he dreams (the man not the dog!) and has an erection. Dreams of flying ... don't we all. Don't fall, don't come! No, not yet! The Milky Way ... nature triumphs, the bitch in permanent copulation. Milk flowing from her breasts. Orgasm. So vulgar!
Imagining an ending ... endings to be avoided at all cost.
We in Japan do not have endings. Only a CODA.
A double text: thinking it and living it. Suicide as murder. Not a love suicide, but you, alone, solitary, yourself, exiled - ex-isled ... though it is probably never only yourself: you are two, and you murder the wrong one. Where does the essence of this error lie (the self-betrayal which provokes the writer to write) if not in the void to be avoided at all cost, rent between the desire to seduce and the fear to love?
My notes for a thesis (never to be written) on Kawabata. The man who aroused so much hate in me ... living in his shit-covered house with a hundred birds ... friend of my father. Birds of a feather ...
[Michael - so naive really but quietly love-able - endless pilgrim seeking 'truth' rather than 'wholeness' - i.e. was/his tragic mistake - here, in exile, inadvertently living two stories at once. His own and mine. Irony is the gap between, the irony as of coitus interruptus, always feeling cheated, romance is where the two texts touch. The erotic caress is coincidence. Synchronicity. All writing is from the shore of the island of exile. The beach/edge of the ocean. Falling into the oceanic, the only way for woman to escape the self ... to come. To overcome the endless commas ... To arrive. Love's Body.
Poor lost soul, I found Michael's misery and despair quite touching. He 'fell' for my story of being a translator - unaware I had permission to act the role as part of my study, which was to explore the effect on the foreign delegates of Japanese hospitality and culture. The lecture I'll give in Tokyo in the new year as part of my thesis.]
Michael drunk, which made two fools of us, that first night when I went to his bedroom and took him. Delirious in the morning, asking me to complete his 'true work' if he died ... 'making love', as he insisted he needed to call our having sex. Quaint! So English! A gentleman! Hardly. So I had seduced him. It seemed necessary. Shame if I didn't! Sign of weakness and we Japanese cannot do that! The texts - completing him - were to be at a website: nohzone.net. He would show me what was necessary to move around in the labyrinth (in which he was the monster of course); genuinely afraid he was dying, especially while having sex. Against his doctor's orders! Unfortunately he didn't die in my arms, a story I could indeed have sold! I suspected at times he was wanting to die ... he had had enough. Of words or women? That's why I liked him. A challenge! He could no longer take anything for granted, such as surviving a good fuck! As he said - only one thing worse than growing old - dying.
Yoko and I brought up as Catholics. Fact and crucifiction. Crucifaction. Crucialfiction. Circumschism. Ration-anality. We tear each other apart, attempt to overcome our fate of being two, she and I, being double - the subject in, and of, each other's love and pain. Subject-object in fusion. Twins in Hell. Twin cannibals in bedlam. Time Must Have a Stop. She and I. She and me. I and she. And 'him' ... a poet we dream will come to us and love us both equally ... the Exorcist ... the Wanderer, the Pilgrim. We would be his roots ... if only for a moment. Time in which to grow a few more leaves; before leaving. He was so obsessed with Yoko I thought he was surely right for the part!
An endless deferral of meaning.
Lovers, two vaginas, we cannot escape. Each other. Ourselves. One a demented virgin. Endless endless ... Kraftwerke ... shop window dummies ... unending endlessness etc ... ad infinitum. One to the power infinity. Which is probably 1. Born two and weaned to be a 1. A shishosetsu I. And yet sisters ... threatening to split each other back into two.
Thinking as dreaming. Thinking holographically [Michael's weird expression.] Thinking and dreaming - same files but different access software. We appear to think with a singular clarity, but the images are inevitably (the nature of nature) haunted by hidden texts, a palimpsest (M's word), which are the workings of the unconscious, the Dream author's scenarios - him - HIM - Pluto, Hades, Daddy, master of the underworld, the black prince; the unconscious always trying to conceal his/her power is directing the/our actions. Why? What got fucked up in our evolution that we must be denied the essential truth of and to our selves? Serfs in the domains of the id! We claim certainty (the worst myth of all) for all such re-membered texts, all of which alas, are preeminently and inherently unreliable. Having been dis-membered in order to need being re-membered: parental love. Asserting some/one/thing adamantly: Adam in the sky with diamonds. A dam - as built by a beaver on a swollen river ... a dam against the Oceanic. (Now the floods ... he said ... here become snow). The ghost always wins, with all of time on its side. Remain reserved, reserved for the creator, like Yoko, poised with all passion compromised. Poor little Catholic girl! She the virgin and me ... we completed the double act. The ghost cannot exist without its victim. (In whom it can see itself undarkly - its mirror. The lake. Narcissus. Are all ghosts not trying to reclaim the self? Dam it up, damn it up? But to whom does the self belong, if not the others, the ancestors? We are mere vessels to contain the virtual mariners ... overseen by the albatross ego ... )
The ghost is/as seduction. No independent existence beyond the Seer. The Voyeur. As a diamond in the dark glows with its own stolen light - fluorescence ... Flowering ... deflowering ... yearning to be seen (but by whom? - fireflies, moths?) in total darkness. Through the glass lightly. Unbearable lightness ... Cafe de Flores ... Florence a girl I once loved at school in England. I never told him I was once a young girl ... in petticoats and pigtails, and had flowered in England! Fear of darkness, night, the relentless turning of the earth, the gyres, the fixed faux-smile of the moon. Endless falling, re-turning, forging, forgetting. Dreams of begetting. Memory loss is the only true absolute darkness: and why Athena's nocturnal lover is the owl. The Baby Owl. Athena Noctua.
'Snow Country': the dilettante who is an "expert on Western Ballet" and the whore; the impossibility of love. Forced to submit and admit - that we speak with one sad and lonely dismembered voice. I too am in love with the sleeping beauty. She is myself - my lost self. Who is Yoko. To escape myself, I must love her. But lose her. Free myself from her. Give her to Michael ... anyone! To see them fuck - so I can hate her - as I was fucked! The only hope of freedom from the past. Our shared past.
Learning to forget. It is not easy, the mind resists. Forgetting, the essential process of initiation that allows the subject to break from the cocoon. Addicted to the present. Ecstasy is always present tense. Transcending pretense and pretexts. To live the death-in-life, transcend the present; the eternal subject. Be someone else's beloved object. A collectible. In a glass case. Forever. A muse-eum. A mouse-oleum ... The word mosaic - in Greek, mousaikos - meaning "of the muses". M describing his nohzone map as "his mosaic". His Memoirs, the relics in his private museum. The writer as collector/curator of museums. Animal tests. Other people's stolen selves. Of mice and women ...
Dreamscapes - the illusion of past and future. No dream can exist in the present. The Dream creator (Director as Michael called him) has no choice but to access files in the past or in the imagination of a future. Time is the cross. The cross-roads where the father is murdered.
If I kill Yoko, it will be the father in her (she incorporated him, phallic girl) whom I shall kill.
The attrition of feeling, the past eroded. The orphan as mere commodity. An orphaned girl, a common oddity.
Different ways of speaking: the speech of men and women: eg: Once, it was all prostitution. A fair exchange of valuables. Freedom? I must renounce love and motherhood in exchange for power. Money.
The name: Shima-mura. Village-island. Heath-cliff. Michael was right in his BrontëGate - Emily was an opium addict. Why else make all the names in Wuthering Heights interchangeable, always ''the same'' - the bottle on the shelf, the name in gold leaf, laudanum, from the apothecary - shelved, as she had been, left on the shelf, the stone window shelf, the broken metal frame - the girl she had once been, dreaming of love and passion, forever excluded, exiled - a girl whose name has been dismembered: ''Nothing but a name repeated in all kinds of characters, large and small'': like she and I, she and me, coincidence, romance, the same but different, verticals, sisters (Catherine and Isabella, the sister-in-law: sado-masochism) inter-textuals, all names and bodies and lost selfs (serfs) interchangeable, time is cyclic. Re-curring. Currer ... such an odd name. Currer Bell. Ellis Bell. Girls in their bell jars. Dojoji. The Bell. S ... elves ... fairies. Angels. Swedenborg. Buddhism. Opium addiction ...
The spectre showed a spectre's ordinary caprice; it gave no sign of being; but the snow and the wind whirled wildly through, even reaching my station, and blowing out the light.
Salomé was known in the middle ages as "Spirit of the Wind".
Emily, opium addict. Near-death experiences. Out of body ... out of mind, but never quite entirely. The mind clings, goes with you on the trip, creating the illusion that in death there is a soul. Quel déluge; what delusion! Adept at leaving her body, the opium trance, leaving her body behind ... for whose use? But the ghost ...
The scarlet poppy, the scarlet pimpernel. The persimmon tree. We seek him here, we seek him there ... as Michael quotes Heathcliff bewailing his misery after Catherine's death: "The entire world is a dreadful collection of memories that she exists that I have lost her". He sees her everywhere, in every flower, leaf, tree, stone ... even after her death. She is the wind that rustles the world into motion ... and life. But he ... he is now Deathcliff.
Such a man I would have loved! As Emily loved him. He was herself!
"Then dawns the Invisible, the Unseen its truth reveals;
My outward sense is gone, my inward essence feels—
Its wings are almost free, its home, its harbour found;
Measuring the gulf it stoops and dares the final bound!
Oh, dreadful is the check—intense the agony
When the ear begins to hear and the eye begins to see;
When the pulse begins to throb, the brain to think again
The soul to feel the flesh to feel the chain!"
Yes, I too would have loved her! She for whom opium had become her only sensual lover ... other than herself. I would have taken her fingers, kissed them and replaced them with my own ... dipped in snow ...
For no other reason than my loving Emily, did I give myself to Michael Schlieman. Author of a book ... a man who seemed to understand a woman.
Love as death, death as sex. She and I would have to have been lovers to avoid going mad. The lesbian embrace. (As in Beau-de-l'Eyre ... his poems and his dreams.) Oh how I yearn to think she had her lovers! Depraved virgin that she was! She the cliff and I the heath ... vertical and horizontal, the cross, storm und drang, between us we would have crucified time and space with our passion. And vice versa. This text of mine, a mine-field, to be divided, dismembered, into four hundred and ninety parts.
My thesis: the orphan as pilgrim. Exile. From the city to the wasteland. The moors. As the diary of a man Locked in Wood. He who went in search and became haunted and trapped by a cracked window ... and two cracked women ... Emily and Cathy. Cathy and Isabella. Always two women! Angel and whore. Spirit and body. A pilgrim, a severed tree spirit (Attis, Osiris, Christ) trying desperately to carve his way out; from inside ... from inside the Holly Wood ... the knot in the wood ... the severed branch ... the daughter as the golden bough. Dido. A shoulder on which no woman is allowed to cry, biting her own arm, a shoulder on which only birds may perch, no human hand may caress. Fingers bitten down to the quick (quick quick quick go go go) and become claws. Said the birds. Fed with words. Choked with words. Mute as they mute. When you have fought in the world of men and been wounded, but won a woman in doing so, a woman who then betrays you, the aggression must shift focus onto her, she and all her kind becoming syn-and-anonymous, cursed with the same one name. Non name. Anonymity. Noh name. Her name is Betrayal. Jealousy is the fear of losing the self. Betrayal is the name of the thief. (Who stole the peach?) She went away with him (me) ... mental travellers, wanderers, took my soul away, my unborn daughter, nailed her to the rock ... By going away she murders me. In fucking Michael, she will free me, I can hate her rather than love her. Lose her. Let her loose, rather than protect her. Sisters. Steal her virginity and make it my own. A beard. A false mask. A re-membered membrane/brain ... member ... rain ... words falling apart ... snow.
Abject subjectivity (Narcissus - he who loses his root, his footing, because he has no feet, no feet of clay) inhabiting a domain of echoes/chaos. Chaos/echoes. Hearing yourself speak before you speak and thus, never speaking the innermost truth. Never giving birth to truth. The egg remains unhatched. The crucible of a universe.
'Their faces, almost always covered with a fan, were painted white, their eyebrows plucked and replaced with a smudge of paint higher up, and their teeth dyed black.' I must send a postcard to Michael. To taunt him ... I will be his Echo. Yoko his mirror. We, the double mirror in which he will drown! Everywhere he goes he will see me ... the fallen goddess. She and I will be one ... no. I fool myself. The split remains ... especially after sex. The disgust creeps upon you, knowing again, again, yet again, that nature has seduced and betrayed you. The bitch! Michael, you bastard! I might be pregnant! I had not expected the return of the poet. I (with my shishosetsu I) was not prepared!
And drunk! Shame: such shame not being a woman who can merely yield to one who has taken pleasure in her. Komako. The perpetuation and proliferation of the perverse. What books are worth reading other than those which transgress, filling our minds with the vicarious images of arousal through destruction? To be a Child of my Time. Lost. Prodigal. Prodi-gal. Prodigirl power. Prodigy. Prod; to poke or jab. Be poked. Play poker and lose. Production of the child. A returned child.
Reincarnation: I will return as a boy, then I can fuck Yoko without needing Michael's penis. Devirginate her in ecstasy! The prodigal daughter returns. Return of the repressed. The Pre-Possessed ... but by whom? Pan and his daemons. Pandemonium.
Last night I dreamt a white fox came to Yoko's bed and de-virginated her! Bit his way in ... I licked the blood off his jaws and claws. By Pan Demon I am. As, when I make myself imagine:
The most depressing things ... Things that people despise
Hateful things ... Things that arouse a fond memory of the past
Trees in winter
Birds flying fornicating on rooftops and in trees
Trees without birds
A woman yielding: Sur-render - sur-real - rendered above the real. Rent, in the desolate abode of excrement ...
Rare things: What I love to hate and what I hate to love:
Make-up. The beauty and mystery of paint. The promise of the puppet. True pleasure, to be thus and only thus, given; sex with no psychological - or social strings - only purse-strings attached. The doll junkie. Diction. Unaffected. Addiction. Doll-diction. Speaking with or through a penis. Wind in the Penis! A blow job. I always hated Latinised diction!
Words I would never use: like ... 'No. Wait'. Colour I would never use as body paint: Translucent. Places I could never be pierced: Downtown Kyoto. My left ear lobe. My clitoris. Central Park. The valley of the shadow of death.
Hates; hating false endings. The deferral of orgasm. Going feral. Fucked in the woods like little Red Riding Hood by the Big Bad Wolf. Dying in fire rather than water. Fire in the water, the hieroglyph for war. Kamikaze. Having a fling. Flinging yourself at a man ... Implosion. Explosion. Guns. Orgasm. I saw. I concurred. I came.
Women are space; how then to surround space, engulf space, seek to deny space by being filled? By what? Him, food, the child, shit? Dreaming that from their breasts may come the River of Heaven. Sisters. The Milky Way. Sisters. Yoko's little breasts, so unfunctional. Milkless. Thinking of her as I made love to him; only because I saw how he had fallen so utterly for her? He just happened to be passing through. Me! Towards her. A comet. Ice at the centre. Happened to be there. I had read his book. I couldn't care a fuck about him. A game. Imagining milk in her breasts gushing out of the corners of his mouth - from mine, his sperm. To contemplate the loss of maidenhead is to see the true meaning of absence, of nothing, imagining the inevitable embracing (embracement) of nihilism, to foresee the absence of the future. A brace on a clubbed foot ... foothills.
Oedipus-Byron. B-ironic. The incurable Romantic. He died for the Greek cause. Crucified by beauty. This alone I understand. I would have flung myself at him, hat-pins at the ready. Him or me? All men one man. One man alone on a spectre ship ... a poet about to drown. Insemination ... nowadays by Frankenstein.
What is shown, what is withheld, what is imagined is what can arouse - once guilt has taken its stranglehold. Bondage.
Dreaming as deconstructed thinking; once, once only, being in love, sitting near a pool of water its mirror surface uncorrupted by inner life, reflecting light, lying under snow, laughing, gazing at a silver bowl. She said: Do I agree? We are both in love with the director of the hidden text? Falsified texts. Fictions. Lies. Shall we fuck him or love him and reject him? Fools!
To need to know the man to read his fiction on more (many) than one superficial level. Bio-graphos: confessions. Porno-graphos: the writing of prostitutes. Sex as confession. I will write. I write therefore I (she) become(s) free. Knowing his other lovers (bitches!) and despising them (a child is being beaten) as you make love. qv Genji Monagatari: The first sex-psychological novel. He fucked them all and loved them all. His and her (the authoress) double text. During this epoch most of the books were diaries written by women. Pillow books. Press too hard and they burst into a cloud of down ... Or pornography written by men. Press too hard and you'll hurt yourself. Fucking books. Books to fuck with and fuck by. Now its all graphos novels ...
The failure of the shishosetsu revival; to transform the diary into fiction and vice versa. Wasted effort. Can a murderer ever understand how to use a semi-colon? The rapist stop, to put on a condom? A rapist in a million, quick sign him up: buy his life-story!
Graphic novels. The true soul of Japan. PornoGraphic. Available at every railway station bookstall. To be read on the train ... the girl available to be fucked in the toilet. Two hundred bucks. After the war, a mere ten or twenty.
The proliferation of the perverse. The vicarious arousal of images of chaos and destruction. War. Endless repetition. Seeing her taken against her wishes. She will be raped if necessary, it is my dream. Ideally she will know nothing until she feels the blood and sperm trickling down her thighs. I will make him lick her clean! Wisdom transmitted orally - to the beyond, beyond the sexual act. Wisdom is the child, the innocent child; as Michael knew. That is why he loved Yoko. I will initiate Michael into the depths of our misery - anality. She and I. The way we fucked! The Lesbian Embrace! The race to come, to be released. Embers, after the fire the phoenix rising. I will make him bugger her, after he has devirginated her. Tomorrow?
Michael tries so hard, which is why I (slipping up) respected him: he tries to reach me, arouse me. Quaint! Rather than realizing I am not given but can only be taken. I reject the pause, the tease. I need the brute. Brutality, I want to have the hell (endlessly endured in repetition of boring acts of reality) fucked out of me - erased. Is that why I am growing to hate him, despise (despite) him? And so much become in need of him? His prick inside me? Slipping up ... I cannot tell him the truth, that I would only be aroused by being in love!! As Kawabata knew ... he who murdered young sleeping virgin girls ... selling his romance novels by the million! Yes, love - and love (a state of being) for me - forever impossible. Abuse. Once abused, never then to love. Every man a harbinger of abuse. Fuck yes ... endlessly. The portent of Terror ... and so, in terror, from terror, I become the terrorist. And I kill the father. Daddy ... all powerful ... the inscrutable smile of Ozymandias! Yes I killed him. For pleasure. Days from death. Wind and sand weathered limestone ... the high cheekbones. High on opium ... Nothing besides remains ... but theatre. The mask. The art of erotic artifice. The elegance of the well-orchestrated, well-perpetrated lie. As the blossom falls, what else? I confess ... but was it mere dream? Only time will tell. Tell all ...
Meanwhile it is only the beast who will marry me, marry me with the passing moment. Pass-I-on. Leave me out of it! The theatre in which I haunt myself, angrily seeking to revenge myself for what was lost/thrown away. You cannot forgive or love such a self. As me. As I. So who? Jealousy, the true face (interface) of woman. That alone, or the fear of it, can make her faithful. Better to suffer being faithful than become jealous of her. What would Kabuki be without the shame and jealousy and suffering of woman? I am Kabuki, and Yoko is Noh. The double-double texts. The multiple weave that becomes madness, in this case a shared madness - to be in love with one (and the same) man. A half and half, never good-enough Daddy. Who loved, but also desired ... and drank.
The Heian period; women's teeth always black. Imagine oral sex, the penis in the light, which is light, light reflecting light; what does it become? Against the soft giving portal of those teeth? It can cancel itself out - the theft of light is the theft of so-called rational truth - its betrayer is time. Sadness came easily in the half-light of over-abundant leisure. Pleisure. 'If the ancient Japanese had a sense of sin this was not applied to their sexual mores - engaging in promiscuity with no sense of guilt. As with everything else, the conduct of lovers was an art based on an exact system of behaviour and taste. The success of the whole sexual encounter was judged by the calligraphy and style of the next morning's letter. Poems ... gifts of flowers. Dead leaves.'
Milles feuilles. Dead letters. No more letters. French especially. I have thrown away the address. The telephone without its roots. The white page I gaze at endlessly. I work at my craft: the silk-warper. Everything lost forever. We each of us recreating history. Warpscape, weftscape, no escape from the narcissistic weaving of time past and time future, tapestries, webs that strangle us; becoming wordless; where words end the dance on the invisible lattice begins; on the pivot, the psychosis which is the present; masturbation. Self and other who is no other than self. The here and now ... lost but still here ... alive but dead, dead but alive ... endless repetition. Please please Yoko do not leave me, leave me alone!
Now we inherit/in-her-it (In her? It! It? The penis - the pen-is - the sliced feather - the pen is with which we write - and fuck) the abomination of the flesh. Flesh - the Christian gift, a Christmas present from the West. Flesh coming forth (from an un-abused womb - god forbid the thought!) into the world via the Virgin's left ear. Gabriel's breath or spit as immaculate conception. Yeah! Every night I cleaned my ears, behind and deep inside, a hard edged vagina, but he never came! Never spoke! All my dreams were of space, empty and open and silent ... I should have been a cosmonought.
How to avoid the desire for revenge? Write a Noh play and live it out? Would he ever believe the truth? Our truth? My sister and I, half-sister whom I love, whom I might need to murder? We share a father ... and a fearful fate. A double headed snake, she and I ... poisoned each other with every ardent embrace.
Kawabata. My father's friend. The dreamer in his house of the living birds. Yugen! Bird shit: mutes. Mutations. Bird shit on the books; shitting mindlessly onto the open page. The dancing girls they shared, he and my father. No. Michael would not believe, he mocks coincidence, confuses it with irony. In coincidence there is fucking. In irony, sado-masochism. I seek literary allusions which link to the true other I need to seek. Links to the erotic. Without such links, words affirm detachment, exile, alienation, hate. How to make words ejaculate? Inseminate? Seeking poetry, i.e. not milk from the breast but sperm from the penis of the beast.
Words I can never use again: love, trust, truth. Time past or future. Childish pastimes. Sisters in love.
People I could never love. Dancing girls. Cover girls. Icons.
Colours I could never use as body paint. Flesh colours.
Films I would not have agreed to appear in - parts which would have chosen me, nevertheless. Orphée; I could only have played Death, and died perfecting method acting, dying proving perfection of my skills. Wuthering Heights; the child at the window. RashÇmon; the rape victim. The Balcony; all the girls, luscious whores well-versed in the art of acting, dressing up - and down - their speech occasionally stilted ... lisping, mouths full of fresh warm semen ... oh every film ever made. How I hate films!
Lush literary allusions, polymorphous perversity. Re-Verses. To be rich in re-cover-able contexts - cover-ups, confessions as cover-ups - Michael's obsession - how to hide the truth? I will expose him! I have lived too much too soon. Too young to celebrate detachment. I strive to detach myself from the masochistic pride of detachment - and I end up detached from time.
I am the mirror's bride, the echo's mistress, the lover's corpse.
Another place in which I could never be pierced. Izu. The Bath.
A tattoo I would like on my bottom. A midwife toad plodding home to his hole - one claw already in my anus.
Michael. He came here expecting to discover so much that would surprise him - the altogether new, the nonetheless other - which, in the impoverished world of books, he may have found. But in life? Blinded by images still haunting him, clinging to his own fingers, he was not at home, he said, as he was in the conference in the Lake District on the Lake Poets, years ago ... he had taken the Maria girl with him. Like Heathcliff he sees her everywhere. Like De Quincey, he sees Ann in the sublime nowhere, in his dreams. Michael sees nothing. I am she. Je suis l'autre. We have all become nameless. Without competition. For men in the new polygamy, what else are we but lonely nameless victims, with nothing to trade, victims seeking new addictions. Recently I have found myself falling in love with shot silk, especially the colour of indigo.
She and I are as good as dead already, and know it. When life and feelings and passion do not 'come' to you spontaneously, when they have to be whipped up from a nigredo of blood and semen‑soaked images we are beyond the limit of meaning. Our capacity to feel, decimated, cremated in the holocaust of every chance encounter, legs spread-eagled on a bare eagle-headed mountain, giving head, we live and die a hundred lives before we are twenty. Afterwards the rapid (once slow) decline. In the past it began at fifty; now twenty. (Too soon the twenty twenty hind-sight). Anal vision, seeing through the anus. Seeing the past not the future. Who is peeping out? Daddy's child. His pure gold baby. Mine. Filthy lucre. The past is what has to be excreted. Why yearn for it? Why desire to wallow in it?
What hope for my generation? Addicts only to the Now, the New? I am beyond them and out of reach. Five years. Ten years. Eons. They seem like children. Even Michael. He is already irretrievably an old man and he is barely fifty. Or so! After fucking him I felt so ashamed, I didn't dare ask his age, it might have appeared to be a reproach. He is an already-dead man, exiled from time, from youth, his and ours, but I dare not tell him. In fucking him again, as I presume I must to fulfil the narrative of Yoko and I, not he and I, I am not sure if I will go too far and kill him (deliberately), or 'make' him young, the gift of the Noh imagination, if only for a passing sparkle of invisible time. I do not care. He happened. We happened together (kind of) as if we hadn't time to lose. I gave him a montage of Pastimes which I do not begrudge him. I enjoyed his book. I too fucked Emily in my dreams, phallic witch. Yoko and I, frigid little bitch, we will be little more to him than errant daughters of Kawabata's orphan imagination.
As Kawabata foretold, man of his time, locked in his myth and tragedy, the blind man forever searching for his daughter Antigone, child of her time; to be his eyes. His world ...
Michael has forgotten (could he have ever known?) that when we have grown up, the essential equation is no longer sex; sex for its own sake, no longer mere desire but status. Money. Opportunity. Continuity. The girl has learnt her trade. This is what her clients expected. She came through with the goods, earned her keep.
Kawabata: 'I always fall in love with women who are between a child and an adult in age. It is inconceivable that I should ever feel deep love for a woman who is completely adult.' Kawabata's self love, his myth, derived from being irreversibly the orphan, he is fixed (involute, Michael's pivot word) at this psychological threshold, as if he himself is the 'other'; the young girl. She is locked inside him, the sister he never had, and to become man, he becomes her; a poisoned chalice. How to free himself from her? He wishes to embody her; if necessary murder her to give rebirth to her. As his soul. He forever seeks to retrieve the lost young girl who is lost and trapped in a bell, in a cage like a bird, inside himself. A holy spirit, a bird crucified on a cross. The impossible quest. Eguchi (sleeping beauties) must also murder ... despite himself, trying to murder the hatred inside himself for imagining murder. Why do these authors always write so many murder stories?
Like Michael's trash spy novels; he told me the titles. Nothing could more describe him in his own words ...
When Kawabata was in love with a boy, described in his sad little book, BOYS, he was feminine, loving the boy absolutely; he himself was the feminine being. He has known the pain and loss of being female. No wonder he mistrusts us! He is one of us. Hence the romance novels he made a fortune with, knowing the plight and dreams of she who surrenders; the whore or the virgin angel of death? Too young to know. Wings of desire. Gossip! Never again (with women, especially mature ones) achieve that passionate state of surrender and this involute (he as the feminine body) becomes the hidden agenda of all his work. He fails to unravel the Isis knot, seeking to 'understand' (he should learn to 'overstand' - penis erect in her presence) his love/need of women, not able to admit to his narcissistic love for an under-age under-developed girl inside himself. Echo. Hence the soft lyricism of his work. His male characters are like the waki in Noh plays - setting off and revealing, 'enabling' the girl, to DANCE and speak and confess, to (stripping psychologically) reveal herself; she who is the shite. But she is merely observed, never truly loved, the waki always the witness, Tiresias with Oedipus, sitting in judgment, helping to create detachment from the shite ... In my next life I will be Yoko. She who was truly loved by our father.
Time the true betrayer. Next time never comes. No, wait! Frigid. The phallic girl trying to be rigid. Meanwhile, then, alas, (our fate) no choice but to fuck Yoko with Michael's penis. What a fucking bore!
Is this not why I try to so hard to reject 'Snow Country'? Would I not do the same with Komako? Use her and throw her out! Did I not do the same? Don't I treat my women badly for fear of them? But they are all I have, in the end, at the end of a day's work. Yoko is the only person I ever wanted to marry ... and have a child with! Myself suckling the milk from her breasts! Grown plump and ripe; all my own work. The Milky Way as Michael calls it. Across which the two lovers pass on a bridge of birds' wings, one day a year, to be together. And fuck.
Kawabata: 'Compared to the vision of the Buddhas and their life in the world beyond as depicted in the Buddhist scriptures, how very realistic is the Westerner's vision of the other world! And how puny and vulgar. This is true even of Dante and Swedenborg. It has seemed to me of late that the visionary passages in the Buddhist sutras that describe past and future worlds are incomparably wonderful lyric poems.' His Nobel prize speech.
So much for Emily's love of Swedenborg. The Decline and Fall of the West. Destroyed by exile from soul, addiction to the Self.
Meanwhile, why not settle for masochism? Why not, if it turns you on? One of Michael's odd phrases - whipping the fuck out of her! Sadist he is at heart. Fucked at the crossroads and abandoned. Better get the piece of silver before he moves on ...
To live a life outside of life. The way we have so often thought, dreamed, written of, in Japan. The multiple paradoxes lie not in the narrative on the page but in the shadow meta-narratives, slyly, the asides, the montage/collage of allusive links - the hypertext links. The red ink phrases scrawled in the margins around the Testament - as Emily Brontë described; beyond the edge, the border. The Borderland. Being framed (for a crime we are hardly aware we commit). Our kind of truth can only ever be implied. Alluded to. Otherwise 'it' is merely an authoritarian accumulation of rules, rulers, measures; so-called reason/facts. But what lover is interested in mentality when yearning for mud, murder, immolation, penetration, incorporation, dis-embowelling? Facts are for those on the run from a crime without a face or name.
Incest. From which I tried so hard to protect her. Spy novels, detective novels, trash, like we have become, Michael doesn't know how privileged he has become to be my 'subject', my character, my play thing, my masturbatory toy with which I can now live out my occult (adult-erated) scenario. I cannot allow him to 'know' the script because his knowing would destroy the mystery. His not-knowing is the where-with-all with which I will seduce her. I will borrow his power. Steal, he might say. If only for the moment. Plagiarism of the penis. A who-done-it? Michael's problem is he seeks truth, not magic. His narratives are always documentaries rather than 'acts' of magical theatre; Kyogen as we call them. All I ask of my lovers is that they have no name, no face, but become a Yukihira or a Genji and perform, as if on a stage, my body the stage, elegantly, slowly, magically, the dance of death. A tall order? Petrified? Ideally, for the time being, simulated, but who knows what the future (or lack of it) holds?
My hell: endlessly living out her Noh play: The Wind in the Pines. Pining - addiction - the two of us together, she and I. In love with the same man. An oyster and a pearl. Only in the latter, in light reflected from the moon, can the face of Buddha be seen.
Until I see her looking at me! Fucking ... not knowing what is about to come ..
THE PIVOT WORD:
THE subject of my thesis must include the mystery of the pivot word (I told Michael all about it, he was fascinated) beloved for a thousand years by poets and Noh play writers like Zeami. Un-translatable, so I can't reveal the true mystery (to Michael) although I knew he would be intrigued. What is the pivot word but a PENIS? The double helix present, yearning for eternity - to pass on the genes (the past) beyond the threshold of death of the body (the future)? The pivot word splits, like an axe splitting wood, the present into past and future. Perfect expression of the double, the double meaning; double entendre (I always heard voices but now it is Yoko's privilege, she of the maidenhead, the pivotal membrane). The fall. Vertical time reduced to the horizontal. Reincarnation. Incest. She and I making love but not fucking. Only the penis can create the child. Words pivoting around the preceding words (the past) and those that follow (the future), thus a child is born, guaranteeing there can be no ending. As a cell splits into two daughter cells. I will call my daughter CODA.
Past pivot future. See Saw. The second essential essence of Japanese poetry other than allusion. Incomprehensible to Western consciousness = Madness.
The novel which I must write. Of she and I ...
A plagiarism (a living plagiarism) of 'Snow Country'; not a cold, processed, reflective (anal) analysis. I am Komako. My text pivots on the past, his novel, the future, my thesis. I will relive it and destroy it, breathe it and consume it. I need Michael to be-come Kawabata without him knowing. I will distract Michael by suggesting to him (poetic artifice?) he is Yukihira of 'The Wind in the Pines'. But in our play together I will reincarnate the spirit of Kawabata, the man I love to hate and would have hated to have loved, and even more, to have hated having him love me. Death defeated. Ecstasy! My double texts ... the nohplay, the nohvel.
Michael will be sacrificed. The pivot word is the crossroads, where we kill the father; we two Oedipal girls. His mind will implode with involutes. Untouchable, in-apprehensibly he will clutch her, destroy her by penetrating her, turn but a stone, she will be his angel of death. He says he is dying but I dare not believe him, just a sexual gambit to turn me on! He will be my surrogate, my pivot-(al) character - bearer of the cross on which I have written my requiem for the future (stolen in the past from me). I become my own poem, an elegy for Komako, a dismembered legacy of pivot words.
Textual meaning as the pivot between plagiarism and premonition. As is this doubly purloined text; stolen from itself and us, she and I, Yoko my soul, each other. Coincidence copulates with conspiracy and pro-creates God.
My Pillow Book: a magic carpet on which I dream, on which I bask in the fragrance of burnt flesh, as if floating on a see-saw - seen and sawn in two, the circus woman's body into she and me, by the magician in his black cloak, the shaman in his hat of feathers - black raven's wings on his muddy shit-ridden feet - like Tanizaki, his favourite pastime, he's been cleaning out people's toilets again. Caressed by my spectral lover who alone (flying above Schloss Duino) foresees the future and foresaw the past - between what is stolen and what is imagined, foreseen, forsaken, foresworn. Risked.
Endless perpetual unfulfilled motion. Desire dies at dawn, reborn at dusk. Spring. Autumn. See. Saw. Sown. Sawn. The red shoes.
Her dream, the exile's dream, is to remain hidden. Impenetrable. Behind closed doors. Psychic virgin. Hidden behind a pseudonym. Innocence not to be annulled by experience. The tyranny of knowledge. The prison house. How to keep in touch - with innocence? Prey on it?
Affear. The word I create and choose. I am constantly affeared.
As is she. Sisters. Afraid of affect. In all this, where am I?
Seeking the familiar which haunts the body and seems to be a self.
Is not the pilgrim's quest, despite the sore feet and the haiku, always to find (in denial), the self? To which he can add a prefix to his name: name.net ... The original, innocent non-self, the return to origins.
In the violet hour ...
He died faking sleep
Dreams virgin Bodhisattvas
Time's floating music ...
Confessions of a - Girl from The North Country ...
Silent is the House—all are laid asleep;
One, alone, looks out o'er the snow wreaths deep;
Watching, every cloud, dreading every breeze
The whirls the 'wildering drifts and bends the groaning trees.