[from EASY LESSONS IN READING]
[Prompted by a friend’s posting of X OX by chris cheek, a disturbing, haunting depiction of an individual’s inarticulation provoked from without.]
HOUR OF RUMOR
The poet who does not speak
The truth will not be executed
The poet who does speak
The truth will be executed
. . . / . . .
[Excerpt from Part 6]
Several hours later I awoke, naked and cold, my hands and ankles tied loosely to the legs of the table I suddenly remembered the poet had been lying on. I could hear the sound of gurgling, choking, melodious sobbing. The poet was still on the table.
He was alive.
I felt something wet and cold on my stomach. With great effort I raised my head to look.
I fainted . . .
. . . only later to see what it was . . .
(in a cry of lament)
—— the poet’s tongue.
Item, The full version of Hour of Rumor was published in the 1996 French edition of Easy Lessons in Reading.
Item, One of my few works that have “begged” for reworking and interpretation over the years (as opposed to letting something be or discarding it altogether).
Item, The intuitive sense of knowing when it was first written in the early 90s that it would dog me until I had completed a satisfactory version of it.
Item, Still no promise that I will finish it or that it has value outside of what it has prompted me to recognize in other works.
poet, item, truth, rumor, something, reading, tongue, lament, cry, hour