Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 5- a candle)

Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 5- a candle)

Part 5: a candle. [Playlist: Virtual Boy: Mass]

 

you’ve seen where dreams end up:

in the foyer on a polished credenza               in a jar marked kosher
for everyone to admire at parties             the contents naked, shriveled,
obscenely meaty

late at night after the card games
you hear the adults sneak into the hall

the scrape of the lid unscrewing

the muffled sounds of hunched gorging

you barricade yourself behind your bedroom door
light several devotional candles from the dollar store
and conjure the real thing:

he steps out of the wall poster
and makes himself at home        taking the form of a rock angel or
that boy you met at the busstop or the school friend who can’t put two words together

tonight he’s nick cave
you discuss a way to address the problem:

he says             the cleaners are coming, one by one
you don’t even want to let them start

and you say      I believe in some kind of path
that we can walk down, me and you

so with tiny slits on the meat of the thumb
fleshed out with lyrics and candle flames
sugar water collected under the tongue

deals written in nail polish  folded in tight triangles
on college ruled paper
the same song on repeat                        11,       12,       2am

you call the live dreams down from the scrim

ghost riding it in                                                             you’re not sure it’s going to work
then

the walls shift,   the stairwell creaks
the roof shakes shingles free of its eaves

you grab for nick’s hand                        but you palm right through his wave
he shrugs back into the paneling                        just as the jambs vault the lintels

above your head in the crawlspace
you hear the mice panic

from the window you watch                 beams snap free of rafters       the house stretches                                first one long wing

and then the other

nails squeal                   mortar crumbles
pipes pop loose like tuning forks
the attic belches bats and owls

the floors groans          the house crouches
and launches

you’re airborne

your window screen blows out
followed by the window

you rise, rise                        clinging to the sill through the first awkward flaps
there’ll be bruises on your elbows from the g force

streetlights shrink
cold air flattens and whips your hair

your block                    your street        your town
shrink to toys    to blurs                             the house glides            soars

dipping to one side              and then the other
floorboards casting a hatched shadow through the moonpath

there are other houses                   here and there other conjurers
transfixed at their bedroom windows
faces transformed

your house flocks with the other houses
together they swing west

far below, the oil refinery         a black dragon with long nostrils capped by venting flames
is chewing its rear leg free of a retaining wall:

several freeway overpasses and a section of tunnel
kite past               the wind howling over their lips and mouths

out over the water now
you see the lighthouses dive and submerge
playing in the surf around the feet of the bridge

and that’s when you hear the music
feel it first, really, vibrating your lungs:

it is the houses sailing the length of the bridge
dragging their wingtips along the suspension cables

you catch the gaze of a girl in a basement window
dear friend
                  her eyes say                                          welcome

 

read part 6

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