Wednesday, 7 September 2011

The Volcano Lover

(J.M.W Turner, Eruption of Vesuvius)

I set my sight on what was before me and thought I owned the scenery. There was an eruption happening, true, but the burning red of flame was made beautiful when it soared amid the oppressing dark of sky. I had an impulsion of holding what I saw into my hands, like a ravishing possession, although it might be like coals, tossing and turning about. I could answer anyone who questioned, that I did covet the scenery, so exceedingly that the ongoing flame trailed through my head, casting an indelible badge in commemoration of my frenzied passion. No, not did I once awake and eradicate the covetous image from my memory. Nor did I rack my brain feverishly for a more accurate delineation of the scenery. I simply needed to draw up the curtains of my bedroom and there provided before me the same image I had always dreamed of dreaming.

But as I wound up the curtains in a fury, with my searching eyes I discovered a picture which, although doubtlessly bearing much resemblance with the former one I saw the day before, was not without some slight alteration. It was obvious. The flame lost somewhat of its sturdiness, and was on the verge of whisking away. The colours followed suit, shredding away with the imagined winds, depriving the flame of its luminosity. A shaft of light pierced the eruption, cut it into half, and adorned the fire-red with its transparent white. I saw everything rumble and tumble before me, in a frolicsome fashion almost bordered on absurdity. My heart took an abrupt descend, as if my virginal hope just being raped by unlawfulness. I captured a blue bird venturing into the throng of eruption. Bless her fare well!

Every slight alteration amassed in gradation into a monstrous disjuncture. I dared not conceive the day when I drew up the curtains and the scenery before me was no longer discernible. I was sequestered in my home; I was hindered from venturing out and saving the scenery I possessed so dearly. I could not bare the sight of seeing the scenery vanishing before me, fizzling out or exploding eventually into a null. I pictured in my head the imminent sight, of a great lashing of red flowing relentlessly into an unknown destination; of the light proclaiming victory eventually and exerting its tyranny with the impregnable transparency; of the cessation of the ever-thriving eruption. My possession refused to live- I felt in my hands the stop of its throb.

The house trembled at night, I could feel it even in my slumber, and changed shape. Surreptitiously I approved of the house’s conformity to the ongoing polymorphism. Rock and sway, sway me to the eruption.

Saturday, 3 September 2011

Dance of Life

(Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Street, Berlin)

We dance through our lives. Ever been to a waltz where partner changes from every turn of the back, every swirl of the body? I was once in a waltz, where happened to be my most eventful, I found myself pursuing in coincidence by two women in their prime. Despite my visible discomfort away I danced with the more striking one of the two, leaving the other grimly jilted. Her palpable sadness I can still recall- two eyes stared straightly to the front while the shadows of dancers skidding before her higgledy-piggledy. What belied those eyes was fire of jealousy that simmered, whose tongue lashed over across my back. Flicker of fire that itched me.

Not only in love but we also dance through all aspects of life. That was how I once waltzed pass a fair, where a troupe of children with hobby horses on their heads frolicked about. How I was seized with a sudden panic when those hobby horses surrounded me so, as if I was the sole target of their feast, a bevy of unflappable bees. They raced their dances around me until my eyes could no longer discern an individual out of a throng, like a stream of variegated banner in advance. The ruler on a balcony above the crowd raises his hand to appease the unruliness. He commands to reorder the unorderly, “I commanded a play not a mayhem,” he said. A thousand voices, though barely-audibly squeaky, shrieked back: “We are playing.”

“Yes we sure are playing,” came my rejoinder. I mingled into the throng and together we hastily organized an order. However, the cues we could hardly follow and we shoved off each other, vying for a position that was already occupied by another. The ruler was clearly enraged by what he witnessed. “Take to me your leader,” he bellowed. A thousand hobby horses raised their props in response to him.

I was thus swept away from the fair, deep into the unknown I ventured. Tapping our shoes we danced to the imaginary sounds that awakened the vicious, but never the dead. We did stumble upon a few graves, whose names we could hardly assume through their mounting snow. Snow smoothed our ragged gaits and we danced, never before were we that wildest. We wrote the names with the tilted tip of our shoes. The snow eventually melted and revealed, the names we wrote and those who were there, but all were forgotten, that and that and that, all gone.

It was not until we took off the hobby horses, did it dawn on us that we were still in the fair. You gaped at us from above, us in the ring, faces smeared with paints and tears, still baying above the loudest. “This joke and game is no fun,” I finally sobbed.