Oh, no it’s Him!
Behold the Benevolent Butcher:
Here to collect his dues.
He beckons me kindly to open the door. He tries to seduce me with a Holy Verse from the Holy Book. But I see the bloodied cimeter with which he intends to smite me. I also spot his ravenous hound, the bastard son of a gigolo kin, a few yards behind. My heart is pounding. I can’t feel my toes. The amygdala sucks. I will be made an example of today to deter future sons who default on/intend to default on/ are unaware of/ the accumulated interest inherited from their fathers. There is nothing shocking about this. Classic middle class Lapenese values. It is encouraged, enjoyed and much appreciated. The slaughtering of goats I mean. We are civilized people. We never fight. We practice gentle maliciousness. We die from brain cancer and esophageal ulcers.
My asshole relatives laugh and clap in glee as the Butcher proceeds. They sing praises. They kiss his feet. They kiss the big moldy toes of the Butcher who sings the Blessed Song so eloquently. After my body is decapitated and the hound has had his fill, they gather around my poor father and mother. They sip tea and vomit carcinogens. Maybe Whackmando hasn’t changed. Maybe it’s just me. But the hills are closing in. I need some wiggle room. I need some oxygen. Get me out of here! Somebody. Anybody. Taking the next flight out. CHAKKA JAM. Residual karmic forces at work.
Some are singing, some are wailing. Others are burning tires and throwing stones. There is chaos in the khaalto today. There will be blood spilled tomorrow. Come Saturday, the deceased will be burnt, their ashes resting on the banks of the dirt river. On Sunday more rocks will be thrown. Speeches will be made. The mob will mobilize. The mob will scatter. Traffic will stop. Then it will move. The tube sniffing street urchin will run after a car. He will ask for money. He will get kicked around. He will mouth obscenities. He will earn contempt. He will give up. He will try again. He is hungry today. He will kill tomorrow. Some are affected. Some are not.
The Gluttonous Rodent salivates.
– This is how you live it! I love it here. Don’t you?
Every time I see him, it’s the same hogwash. The bonuses and perks and the occasional blowjob. How much his client’s worth. How to hustle. How to gain respect. How to become a somebody in this khaalto.
– Screw you scum.
I look around. He’s not in the room. Another hot, sticky Whackmando afternoon. High fever, garbled dreams. Papa Herzog is conducting an opera down in Alabam (I’m trying to put on an accent). Police on the look out for a thin man with a goatee in a Stetson hat standing on a window ledge strumming a classical guitar. A pot-bellied rat got skinned alive and served to a judicious legislator of the people in a roadside sekuwa-ghar not far from here. Why did I come back? Only the fittest survive here. The meek are squashed under the unforgiving weight of the city, buried in a cache of pamphlets advertising profane dreams and fifty-story kondos.
The city has changed. The city is always changing. It is gearing up for the Big One – the final race to tower over ruthless adversaries in search of Vitamin D. Preparation for the Fall expedited through the uphill grind and clash of noisy concrete slabs. The Butcher with his army of soulless architects and midget merchants proceeds to claim the bid yet again. He recites another verse to consecrate the blade that is to fall upon rheumatic gods residing in decomposed wood. The Gods must change to suit the mentality of man.
– Please pass the Sacred Pipe, Wichasa wakon. Let’s Resurrect the Dead.
Wichasa wakon says THIS is the Song of the Universe. I come now, to the beat of a hundred sweaty fingers smacking and sliding against taut reindeer skin. Across the great ocean the Resurrected Buffalo of the prairie breathes fire.
– You have skinny feet! You have to stomp harder!
The Ancient Lions of the valley remain mute. The sacred is useless. Rituals, rhythm and space serve no utilitarian function. The Butcher issues a decree:
ISSUED IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST.
MANDATE No. 3102 BC/KY-SD
ALL VILE PHALLUSES TO BE UPROOTED AND REPLACED BY THE ELEGANT CRANE. DIVINE PULSATION TO BE SUBDUED BY ROBOTIC HYMNS. GHOSTS OF OLD TO SEEK ASYLUMS IN DARKER CORNERS. WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT. GATE GUARDIANS OF THE SOUL TO BE RELOCATED ON PUBLIC WALLS TO SERVE AS GATE GUARDIANS OF THE TOILET. WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT. ANY CITIZEN FOUND TO BE VIOLATING THE MANDATE BY DELAYING OR OBSTRUCTING THE DEMOLITION OF OLD AND USELESS HEAPS OF BRICKS AND WOOD (IN THE OLD CITY) WILL BE PROMPTLY HUNG FROM THE TALLEST TREE. WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT. Sorry, TALLEST CRANE. ALL HAIL THE REVOLUTION!!!
THE BUTCHER, signed.
Peyi- a fini. Peyi- a fini. Yo Yo Ma comes on from Suite No. 1. Polythene bag whizzes out a window, does a somersault and lands on the wrong head. The wrong head every fucking time. It’s gonna come with practice. In due time, the aviators will master the skill of landing a bag o poop gracefully on the right head. We’re getting there. But it won’t happen till this khaalto implodes. Beneath, the streets are swarming with highly energetic automatons – all drawn by some dark, mysterious force towards rows of brightly lit concrete behemoths with little starless windows. Is it the will of Nature? Is it the ignorance of Man? What is it? The lights go out. Bastards! They changed the schedule again. The beginning of the last leg of the dark phase picks up steam. Hare-brained revolutionaries, man-eating physicians, sterile poets, child prostitutes, parasitic reporters, psycho-micros – all snort dust and give head to Almighty Moldyfoot. Shampoo commercial floats off some transistor radio. Do you see the difference, croons a nightingale through the toxic airwaves. What to do about the Dandruff? What to do?