I’ve been asleep. I dreamed of a desert.
My last scrapbook page was portraits of the birds in hats. You may remember that Hawk chose a white plumed hat with a blue ribbon.
I was surprised by Hawk’s preferred hat: white with a sky-blue ribbon. Hawk explained that it was not an aesthetic choice, but a metaphysical one. This particular hat reminds Hawk of an avian creation myth which he relates thus:
White Bird laid an egg.
The egg was the world.
White Bird sits on the egg; it is night.
White Bird flies, up up up, away; egg is cold.
White Bird goes to her friend, Blue Snake.
Snake gives her a but-recently shed skin.
It, like Snake, is shimmery blue.
White Bird carries the blue strip of Blue Snake back to the egg.
Now, before she flies up, up, up, away,
she wraps the egg with blue skin.
It is the sky.
Sometimes a few downy feathers stick to the skin.
They are clouds.
Hawk is far too worldly to believe in this myth, but, does believe personal journeys constellate in mythological structures.
Hawk asked me to share this primitive bird story with you before I fall back asleep.
I don’t know why I’m so sleepy these days! I am a worn-out Odalisque. Maybe that will be my next scrapbook page: “worn-out Odalisque”. It must be the birds, with all their bitter questionings, exhausting me.
As I mentioned in my last post, the birds think I should hang out on the sea shore this summer. To distract them from this discomforting vein of conversation, I indulge their penchant for FASHION.
The birds like trying on hats.
Black Swan likes hats more than anybody. Black Swan would like me to do a whole series of portraits entitled “CROWNING THE INEFFABLE: Hats O EPHEMERAL GARNISHING Across the Centuries as CLASSICALLY DISPLAYED Upon the TIMELESS HEAD of the Rare BLACK SWAN.”
I refused and made him share a portrait with Hawk:
Hawk was deeply moved by the metaphysics of the plumed, dove-white hat, bound as it is by a ribbon of blue sky. I don’t really understand Hawk’s line of thinking; it has something to do with avian creation myths.
Starlings swarm beneath a veil as if it were mist over the autumn brocade of the marsh grasses:
Crow-as-parrot with a parrot in a hat so naïve, I think it is surreal:
The phoenix thinks this hat is bad-ass, especially with a ruched tunic:
I put on a hat, too. The birds suddenly silenced themselves; their heads cocked to eye my every move with beady-black intensity.
They thought I might be going outside:
WHERE ARE YOU GOING!! squawked Parrot-that-was-crow.
I could go outside. If I knew where to go.
whose skin, like wax, melts towards a core flame
whose pleasing balance cracks like a Kouros’
whose eye sockets are packed with black poultice
the tap tap of Oedipus’ gnarled stick
his daughter is not half so beautiful
the gods blushed grapes are not so beautiful
beneath flesh pulp find but three smooth seeds
sweet potential youth
I want beauty actualized
because of time
the knotted root wrought in harsh soil
the scant juice prized aged