Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Boris the Spider

Peter-Peter awoke suddenly one morning from a torrid night's sleep and, although the transformation was not immediately apparent to him, for it was in keeping with the nightmarish sequence of his nocturnal consciousness, he was now, forever, part of the Arachnida family. And also, perhaps, because he had fallen asleep in his Parker. In any case, he was now, to all intent and purpose, an arachnid. But let us not get ahead of ourselves, prior to taking partial cognisance of his situation, he had dreamed of waking up in a bedroom; though he was not familiar with the immediate environs – he didn't immediately recognise the room – there was a definite sense of familiarity. May be that was not so surprising, for it was a regular room; nothing special: a bed, a chair sat snugly underneath a desk, sparsely occupied book shelves and one, smallish, window. This meager catalogue brought no immediate anguish. It was then he began to consider how he came to be in said room. Was he renting? Staying over? Squatting? He tried to recall what it was that he did, that is between the hours of sleep? How did he fill his days? It was beginning to bug him. Did he have a job? Mission? Occupation? Trade? How did he travel about, feed, cloth himself? What sort of things was he interested in? Did he have a hobby? A pastime? A political leaning? A passion? Any passion? Acquaintances, companions, friends? The questions continued to come thick and fast and he found himself ever adrift in a sort of mental slurry that came to a sudden, stolid, stop. He remained frigid as a wooden spoon in broiled porridge. Summoning an unearthly will he managed to roll himself out of the bed. He was having difficulty standing up straight. His knees seemed to flex counter-intuitively to the demands of will. And his skin began to crawl as he felt stinging beads of sweat beetling across his skin as his began to climb the walls, whereupon, it was trapped by the canopy of ceiling. Left dangling in sickening suspense. From thereon he gazed down on the shapes, colours and textures that swilled to form dynamic compounds in Picasso-esque collages. For a moment, he saw new and novel ways in which objects and their relations interlaced in their journey though time and space.

Three Shakespearean wooden knocks sound in short succession.

The void swallowed him whole – he considered whether it was actual “a” void or whether all voids were essentially the same and so, quite correctly, one would refer to the THE VOID – only to spit him out to the sounds of a repetitive machine-gun like incantation:

Peter-Peter! Peter-Peter! Peter-Peter!

Followed again by another wood-rapping triplet and yet more scatter spray ...

Peter-Peter! Peter-Peter! Peter-Peter!

It was his grandmother. Not a particularly gregarious character, especially since her husband, Peter-Peter's grandfather had died and he had felt it his duty to become "the man of the household". Taking upon himself part-time jobs outside of his tuition, so that one day he would have a sufficient income to see that grandma spent her twilight days in comfort. But he was also feeling the strain, like being caught caught in web, anaesthetised by the venom of events beyond his control.

You can't come in grandma!

He couldn't vocalise the words. Sentiment.

Panic sinks in and he makes his escape, cope rope, via the bedroom window. Hours skulking in the dappled shade of alleys waiting for nightfall. Inspiration spins her magic. He breaks into a arts and crafts shop and purloins, in an act of pettifoggery, a handful of how-to knit and crochet guides.

Time passes like a train stuck waiting for traffic control to signal "go" before safely entering the station stop. He writes his autobiography, a leg-stitched bound compendium of carefully crated doily pages of acrylic text, working under the nom de plume, “Boris the Spider” to protect the dignity of his only living relative, his grandmother, from what he imagined would be the ensuing maelstrom of press intrusion, once it hit the New York Times best sellers listing.

Then came the fall.

And a slow, gravitised, death.

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