Thomas Christensen, Fiction
      Thomas Christensen
  right reading news service

homeward bound


I published these short pieces in a journal several years back:


1. Arlecchino Possessed

Colombina made the most curious places home (and made homes the most curious places) but the most peculiar of all was when she set up house inside Arlecchino and became his presiding attraction and resident distraction. How odd that she should have been in her homebody phase in that bawdy home, cheerily dusting the filthy corners of his mopey mind and whistling boleros as she mopped his his sullen stories. At the most inappropriate times Arlecchino would suddenly hear her stacking cups and saucers, defrosting her refrigerator, hosing down her roof garden, grinding her mortar and pestle, scratching out cards and letters, or engaged on the phone with her panoply of fervent admirers like a wired Penelope inside her spanking home moyen sensuel, while Arlecchino ulyssesly listened. He was bewitched by the pattern of her starlit feet tramping and gliding across his offkilter floorboards, and the thought of her agile fingers untressing her web of paisley hair in which he wanted to be enveloped (and licked and stamped, and trapped and wrapped, and bitten and stung), interrupted all his other thoughts until he couldn't get a world in edgewise. Colombina's inhibiting inhabitation had made him a comical Pant-alone. Wherever he looked he saw her face and faced her thought. But worst of all were the dusky closet dramas when she shuddered him up for the night and he strained to hear the soft sibilance of her silky shifts slowly slinking toeward.

How Arlecchino longed to inhabit her then!

2. Arlecchino Bedeviled

Oh, but she were heartless, that hard, hard woeman! The hotter she gut the colder she gruesome (it whirr a chimerical rÓre acteon). Her skein flushing, her ice fleshing, she harled armful hurtles before pure cumicall Arlecchino, abject of her afflection, bidding him hump through hoops; and hopful he hoped, bussing aft to that honeyed hussy like a pollinaired humble-be. He up ended kissing nutting butt ire. When he trod to excite her she slippered awry and shod him the exit. Wide she sperm him so? He coldn't understand vicy resistanced him, he cried to whine her collaborationism. She declined verbally. He simperly could not fallow her explantations. She was a languid poet, she spoked in multypal queneautations. In extra sizes of stylus. She romanced languages. She cumpiled privates sexicons. She rote in surrealic allforabites. She diddled graphic things with Asian characters. She cursived like a peter seller tossled aboat in a raging gal. She jest ticklelated ib scene language. She tainted him in prig latin, culling him a recessive poison nullity. And still he longed for her langue, he lunged, lurched, typed offer, and tombled downharded. She mirked and quarked. She flue up like a phoenix when he tuck his poken to hawler ashen. Hup-two, the o-zone again (ascentially)! Desist! He hist at lust in dissipation, but she trysted and world away from him, varnishing into the ire lick Polychrome, the rhinebeau's dotter, leaving him sorely, surly, sorely iseulted, frustered and floozled, tristan shut out, gulled, with naughty to chauffeur his pines but a grate sparky member and a blackened humptydown pot o' feels gilt. O Colombina, Colombina, he willed sloefully, don't be cool, true hearth that's you!

3. Arlecchino Contemplative

Arlecehino was sitting on a stone at Portals of the Past in Golden Gate Park, dangling his Heraklitean feet, listening to the rush of tumbling water, and each drop of water was a moment of the time Colombina had been absent, and the sound of the water was the sound of her voice, which was no longer her voice but simply a siren in his mind that was less like her voice than any real voice was, and he knew that the murmur of the water, though it was all he heard, did not exist, though it shouted her absence, an absence renewed and reaffirmed with every drop, every molecule, that passed his bare feet, and by consequence that insistent, nonexistent murmur only underscored her equivalent unreality, her corresponding failure to exist, the oppressive collusion of the physical world that prevented her body from pressing against his, her fragrance from filling his seven senses, her pliant back from responding to his plying fingers, that kept the two of them separate, that fractured the world into an endless chaotic multiplicity, denying the union he desired, and the water moaned a moan like the moan of La Llorona, the sorrowful Weeping Woman who haunts the Mayan waters of Central America, a moan that likewise did not exist because he heard only the intervals between the sounds, the vacancy between successive presents, and he knew that what he really was hearing was the passing of time washing over him and around him and through him and dissolving him into a million Arlecchinos a million times every millionth of a second, for she wasn't there to stop time for him, she could never be there because she was in the not-now and he was interred in the now, and from that he could liever escape, for neither ever nor never is ever now, just this infinitely solitary instant, which was not even an instant, less than an instant, because an instant is only a bookmark stuck in the tome of time whereas now is a tomb that can be neither opened nor shut, and so she was gone, hopelcsslv gone, less than dead, non-existent, and there was n0 escape for there was no past or future except in his mind, where Colombina did not exist but only a caricature of her, a crude cartoon that merely reminded him that he wanted her but, becoming as she was, sesensational as she could be, she still didn't exist: for Arlecchino time was an endless sentence (without parole) that could never reach its concluding period, and as his antibody secretly, scandalously caressed her absent shape, hs tongue ttasting the taste of the taste of her lips that he couldn't taste but wished he could, he looked again at Colombina's letter where her forms recalled her form, and he began his reply with the words te espero-I hope for you, I wait for you, I expect you-and counted the impossible hours until now would not be now and for one impossible moment she might be with him, and around him the waters moaned ...







top of page