INTO THIS SPACE

 Tom Konyves

                  light at first penetrates uneasily in long pencil-thin strokes, unsettling dust before moving on, ever upward, bouncing from glass to metal in Pan-like strides yet without any semblance of mischief or grace. Its touch is warm, it's true, yet it pretends not comfort or joy. Impossible to deduce a will moving invisible yet causing enlightenment. Against all odds, the creator walks into the path of light streaming through the crusted window and interrupts the silence with a song. The beams know it not, nor the nocturnal roaches, and the mirror is blind, the dust unforgiving.


Into this space
                  water drips mysteriously, avoiding the snare of a tin can with its random bursts. The roof was coated in all the likely places, yet the uneven tap of water persists, a benefit for an unknown tree in an impenetrable forest.


Into this space
                  two lovers have escaped to spend an uninterrupted night together. The calm of the neighbourhood does not diminish their fear of discovery. They nearly trip upon a cot, over which he spreads his long black coat, sits to remove his boots. She is cold under the cover, sitting and hugging her knees, and rocking, attempting to see through the dark. His whispers grow more urgent, yet she moves not, and is silent. He laughs into the silence, to which she replies with a whisper, then a kiss, and a touch.


Into this space
                  a group of squatters have begun moving furniture, a cooking range, portable heaters, boxes of clothing, canned pasta foods. Three men struggle with a washtub through the hallway. As one iron leg catches on a loose floorboard, they're forced to retreat and examine the remaining distance. Children scream and run up the stairs, followed by a small but loud scruffy white dog.
The women hang sheets to divide the sleeping quarters. Two old men sit at a table, tapping black and red pieces on a checkerboard, arguing, punctuating their curses with spitting on the floor.


Into this space
                  Fellini and then Ferlinghetti lured a plump girl of nineteen who has lured three young boys who carry bottles of wine and baguettes. The youngest drags the others' schoolbooks behind him, tied together with a simple belt. How she dances and twirls, drinks and gesticulates with the bread, now like a proud soldier with his gun, now a focused batter with his powerful bat. How the boys cheer and stamp their feet. Popping a cork, she lifts the bottle high, lifts her skirts, and smashes an empty against the brick wall. The youngest begins to cry at that, while the other two hold him back from running out. Loud whispers in his ear do still him, and he raises a new bottle high and thrusts it out to her.


Into this space
                  a burly seascape painter drops his easel near a wide window. Sneezing twice, he struggles with the latch, and succeeds to open the window but not without a big bang which threatens to smash the frail panes. Examining the room from different angles, he retreats, reappearing with two black suitcases, which he drags beside the easel, emptying the contents into one pile. A large blue cloth is last to emerge, which he spreads out on the floor with great care. Now naked, he lies on his back, hands clasped on his chest, eyes open, staring at the ceiling.


Into this space
                  a general will order his men to fire. Positions had been taken only hours before, no warning will be given, no inquiry made as to the occupants' identities or choices (whether, indeed there were occupants, and, if so, were they the cause of the maneuver). The instructions were simple, continue firing until the building is brought down to the ground. The general is not one to question his orders; he has read the handwritten note many times over. There is no reason given, only an address, underlined with three heavy strokes of the pen, a brief statement of purpose, and an indecipherable signature the general took for the Secretary of the Interior. He was not going to take any chances either; a tank was rolled within thirty feet, two truckloads of recent recruits were dispersed in small groups to circle the building. First, the lines of communication to the building are severed. Next, traffic is rerouted, and, as the last voices of soldiers become less audible, there remains only the wait until the word is given.


Into this space
                  the word is given by the poet with the mustache headache, fighting off impossible demands on his flesh, and his bloodtype. To be known for one who "caught a glimpse of the eternal,
despite clearly posted signs to the contrary" he launches one final desperate metaphor and disappears.


Into this space
                  you enter alone, bearing your heart, mind and body. The poem is illuminated upon the wall of your mind, it reminds you of dream in which you were afraid and you knelt before your saviour and said I am so afraid please help and the reply was laughter and shame, you shielded your eyes with your hands and they were wet and they were bloody and you screamed and awoke in the bed of a stranger; the poem strips you bare while you're listening, the poem enters your body as an orgasm.


Into this space
                  seven poets retreat in the heat of writing. In time, they find the perfect combination of form and image – the father hitching white clouds to white horses. Immediately, they are rewarded with the appearance of a great ark, literally floating above the times, a vehicle transformed into a kind of post-modern muse: dispensing favours but coin operated.

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