Here I sit in the house I was conceived in. If I am mistaken, I go about it quietly. Fastidious as I am in matters of delicacy. My great grand-mother Alice (the one with the long tail) never tired of telling me that sin is for the mind with pinhole capacity.
“How are you my darling petal?” I say giving Alice an impromptu kiss. A line coruscates her forehead. She waits. She frowns. She tumbles into the other world. (How impolite!)
A whirl of dervish motion re-appears as a tail of shimmering blur. And a halo. Her ghost hallucinates a four-inch wide balance beam and wields a striking pose in this dark recess of our Elizabethan household empowering the landed occupants to set sail to the New World. With her easy grin she mocks her hosts… their skins a landscape of polished claws. For redemption. For forebearance. For blessing the tides to ease their rugged ways: my Light forebears are an elite gang with a charcoal-coloured ship. Each morning brings examination of our black prisoners. The mortality rate of our inferior cargo is rising…
My grief is not measureable not like equations. Room temperature. Wind speed. Daylight. Dusk. Dawn again? Oh darned self-desultory dawn. Self-illusory dawn. Self-flagellation dawn. No! No! I cannot bare another dishonest dawn. Ignoble. Divested of sweet honesty. Who am I? A distant ancestor, whip in hand, shouting orders to his second mate. Wither embarrassment. Wither shame. She thinks I bare a charcoal grin, I’ll show her destiny does not appear in vain.
The Museum of Fictions is a book about the nomadic museum in Paris. In this section of the book, a guru called Monsieur Hightowers initiates Michele, an Afro-British visitor to Paris, into the arcane ritual of how to wear a museum on one’s body.
We’re all extras, Michele: we live, we morph, we die. Did you fulfill your promise, today? Paris changes with every new wave of gentrification.
So how will I blend in with the Parisian decorators?
You will build a nomadic museum in your studio apartment in Auteuil. Because the museum is nomadic… you will pick yourself up, put yourself down, walk the streets of Paris and take your nomadic museum onto the Paris metro.
That’s the way to blend in around here?
Yes, the museum will be powered by your persona of a woman nomad who, in order to bring her museum to the people, chooses to carry her museum on her body: she then adds extensions to her frame by trailing clothes lines from her limbs. The clothes lines are filled with washing pegs from which hang the pages of the museum’s catalogue. The catalogue is called The Museum of Fictions.
On page one we have maps of pre-sand Egypt; page two: joined up walking with minimal independence due to foot binding; page three; flying yogis, flying. And so it goes on…
Great! Got that! And how do I support myself?
Monsieur Hightowers peels off magic maintenance from a handful of carpet fibers and gives the gift to Michele.
And you just show up like a companion genie.
I envy the fact that you have no family.
I walked from away from them. Are you prepared to do that?
Michele, weren’t you the lucky one who shot your parents?
Luck has nothing to do with it; I just saw a window of opportunity and climbed through it. Don’t let anger lapse into long-held resentment. Finish the task. Blow the whole fucking bridge up if you have to.
Precisely Michele, and reproduce images without pondering unduly. Imagine if you were to do this and nothing else, you would never lack motivation, would you? Either get on with what you came here to do, or continue on like the marionette who never advances beyond the paper finger exercises to the piano. The leader of the pack or should I say the reluctant leader? Willing to let everyone else show their hand before stepping forward and saying … Truth, Knowledge, Ascension, pick a card. And God said: