corner of truth

Samsara has never seen the Amethyst Room and wants to, so our next rendezvous is there in the Philosophical City on a night when the moon is full and the air made out of presences, suppositions, apparitions. She brings a purse full of rings, amongst which is one with a large pale oval amethyst in an old silver setting, which she gives to Rosemary, the chatelaine, when we meet out by the hibiscus, the lavender, the poppies, the sunflowers, the tomatoes. Rosemary slips it onto the little finger of her left hand and gives us the key. The room is as I remember but the Tahitian lime outside the stained bow window has ripened, its fragrant blossom changed into small green fruit that we cut and squeeze over the cantaloupes that we eat with shiny spoons before going for dinner at the Atlas ... except the Atlas is booked out so we end up next door in the Bogey Hole and afterwards go to a hotel, the name of which I cannot recall, where we drink bourbon and coke and play a game of pool with ourselves and then another with a couple of blokes we meet there. Samsara has a clean, straight-ahead style at the table and, both times, sinks the black to end the game. A band is gearing up to do their set but we go instead outside to smoke and fall into conversation with a fellow called Colin and, later, one called Sam who sounds Irish but isn't - he's a native of the Philosophical City and, despite being blind in one eye, has a broad reach and a humorous take on almost everything. Colin has just had his ex-wife to stay, she has broken his wine glasses and rearranged all his things, not through malice but drunken incompetence and he tells us how his mates took him down to the corner of truth to sort him out about it. Where is the corner of truth? I ask and he says that in his case it was in the park just out the back of where we are, which is maybe called Delaney's. Colin goes down to his father's farm for two weeks every year to make the wine from grapes they grow there, somewhere to the west of the Graffiti Capital of the World and advises, inter alia, against growing olive trees as a way of making money ... not that I was thinking of doing that. I'm mostly silent, I sit and drink and smoke and watch Samsara as she comes and goes, moving fast, without a doubt, scattering reassurances like confetti or should I say tinsel? She is beautiful in her black dress, her insouciance and her grace and when at last the pub closes and we have to leave, I imagine (or perhaps I don't) that a universal regret attends her departure. We go back to the Amethyst Room and leave the curtains unpulled all night long. Next morning, at breakfast, the other guests, Kurt and his Danish wife Jeanette (it's their anniversary) tell hilarious stories about a dysfunctional Scottish funeral director Kurt once worked for but Samsara isn't really attending, she is transfixed by the green eyes of King Solomon staring out of a cubistic painting of the Queen of Sheba on the wall behind us ... there are presences everywhere now, it is as if all the denizens in the Illustrated Golden Bough are simultaneously manifesting, as if the lost gods of the Dogon are there, Alexander too, Bucephalus, her mother fleeing Sangala to the other side of sorrow, the further shore from darkness, away from the uncreated world, millennia ago, the Dark Lady, John Dowland who serenaded her, the naked unaccommodated men of Eureka and even perhaps Sha Na Na ... we leave and walk up onto Obelisk Hill where grey striped dragon flies mass around the coprosma below the gun emplacements and I remember errant episodes from my childhood, for instance the concrete slab of an old cowshed that I thought was the ruin of a temple from antiquity, the wooden tray of a flatbed truck that was my ship of fools, the sandpit where I constructed epochal cities ... we go on down to the sea and ramble over the rocks, perfectly happy, looking in pools where anemones waft their purple tendrils and the exoskeletons of crabs abandoned by the tide drift, disintegrate, and when we swim it is in the Bogey Hole, excavated by convicts for some satrap or other, attended by putti, with a fleet of coal ships whose number I cannot count moored out beyond or before the delusive horizon and here, with salts and iodines streaming from her hair she tells me Samsara is not her real name, that was a ruse to divert Moksha's agents, she is really called ... they make one last attempt, there in the car park, impotent, ugly and grimacing as they slide greasy hands down the glass through which they cannot pass and then we're away, we're gone, we're laughing, that was our corner of truth and now we are free to ramble forever as we wish and will but what about the truth test software? I ask and she smiles her secret smile and does not answer ... and in the instant, driving away, I know that we are it and that she knows it too and knows that I know: whereof we cannot speak, I think but do not say, thereof we must pass over in silence. It is the place called home. The Thousand Ruby Galaxy. Or similar.


Folded letters said...

So Martin, I'm wondering if when we die we'll all be lost to one another. In the vastness. What if we could agree upon a location. Like a meeting place. Maybe if it was agreed upon ahead of time, we wouldn't all be lost.

I like to picture your two trying to find each other, out in the eternities. Is it anymore amazing that we are able to meet our own, here on earth? Born when we are, somehow living close enough to touch. Even though we had been previously lost to one another. Somehow two lives, after rights and lefts, run together.

I'm hoping the same compelling force that draws kindreds together here, will also work there. But, it's a much larger space. So, I'm thinking a meeting point is a very good idea. Now, I wonder, where will that be?

Martin Edmond said...

Yes, the meeting place - if we will it, will it be there? No one comes back to say ... I hope the same serendipity that operates here, does there too.

Folded letters said...

Ah so it comes down to faith. It will be there.