Sleepingfish infinite
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from ARCHETYPE APOCALYPTICIST: AS IN HOUSES, SO IN HIVES
by Elytron Frass

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Bittersweet

Eagerly self-medicating session begins guzzling down the drug of an insect—patiently collected from the labors of bees. It is viscous and candied going down; it burns—a backdraft of flame when it’s fluxing back up. I drink: a means to absolve the family unit from myself and vice versa; to purge free of the lingering traumas of childhood; adulthood cancers of guilt, shame, fear, and regret. No longer believing in rehabilitation—in “making it all better”—or in making amends. I loosen from the physical form, from memory, by way of disengaging to far reaches of absurdity. The ultimate goal of mental rehabilitation is transgression because the ultimate hell, after all, is the uroboros—the “looping back” again and again of memory.

The insectan drug is bittersweet. I stand up until my legs give out from under me. Shaking limbs like jelly. There’s a moment of blissful surprise. Calming—the respirations depress. Cooling—the pins and needles of the limbs are replaced by cold and numbness. The belly laughs drunkenly before constricting guts with pain. I look upward, trembling in my mess on the floor. The whirling lights begin—spinning white lights in the dark. Hexagonal stars are whirling ‘round and ‘round across the ceiling.

An aura; an emotional insurgence is vying for attention—certain memories which I strive to keep repressed. The head swells accordingly; blood thickens and beats itself against the brain barrier; something kicks and punches to hatch its way free from deep inside the skull. I cradle the temples to simmer it. Trying not to analyze events of the past for the root of a problem, I make a point to follow a problem through to its complete undoing—and, if possible, beyond.

I see myself at a distance in my mess on the floor. Whirling lights on the ceiling, whirling lights on the walls—the floor fills in with hexagonal stars. I scry over them as diviners would scry over a mirror darkly or a crystal ball. Scrying evokes peculiar imagery. Staring at the image in a hexagon the symbols change at each internal angle. From each hexagon, from each of its six internal angles, oracular visions are implanted in the brain. Instead of showing me old memories—the hexagons reveal what is approaching a great number of years from now.

 

Hexagon II: Seperatio

Returning to the waxen house of dream, I can see that it is ravaged; personal hygiene’s been neglected; civility fades with the maternal pheromone of control. Doors are not barred; windows, unlocked. Uninvited visitors wander in and out at random hours. Swarms of Apis laboriosa are flying in through open windows. I watch them as they’re fast to make their hives along the walls and lampshades. Their waxen hexagons draw me close; their obsessive and specific yet entirely invasive nature draws me inward, contemplatively.

I am no longer identifying with the father figure as he slips in through the window one last time to be with his composite mother/lovers. Beneath him I am her as she is smiling the smile of burnt meat and renewal. Something inside the father figure burns. Her stiffly textured features: charred hamburger remains resuscitate and prove that fire can do more than simply change one’s chemistry and form. Slowly the ashen hand of the composite rises to press upon his hip—encouraging deliberate strokes of procreative movement. I emerge from my parents’ ash; the father’s son is born; he is but my older brother. As my older brother, as the son, I am become a product of my home. My siblings know that hell begins here like fire before it spreads throughout the country and the world. Home is where the heart is; its toxic stinger imbedding into anyone who dares to enter. My siblings are a colony of insects—lost without their queen, their mother, their oppressor. I am my father’s resentful daughters tasting sweetness in my mouths. My six tongues smack lips—no longer slaves, but heirs to independence, misdirection, and wild abandon. Irreverently, they dance around their brother in a home burnt black.

Six siblings regress before my eyes crawling shamelessly on walls and ceilings. They lay with bees and mites among the anomy and filth. They’re tossing eggs from the refrigerator. Latent senses waken in the ovaries—a tingling, coupled with urgency, triangulated by domestic boredom. The sticky hands force through the stinging bodies of others. Their brother is the center of attention. His limbs are ropey objects pulled so tautly in between his siblings’ tug of war games. No one takes; no one gives. Meanwhile, the living room’s interior completely waxes over with the latticework of bees. Forgetting that these children and this home and all its infestations are merely emissaries of within—distorted representatives of self—I am wincing every time that they pull harder one way or the other.

I am now the eidolon, an ideal image of my once-conscious form. Merely a spectator, I watch my sisters pulling at the body of my older brother. Watching this is terror—afraid that I’ll be spotted and then forced into participation; I worry that I cannot leave. Cautiously I tiptoe backward towards a wall that’s feeling sticky on my back. Firmly pressing up against it, the wall eventually gives way—tearing through its center with a viscous schlepping sound. Slipping and falling out into another room, its waxen sinews and tiny hexagonal latticework is clearly noted.

Even though Apis laboriosa are not in view, their loudly buzzing presence is intimidating me. I’m waiting for a vengeful swarm that doesn’t come. Covered in honey and staring into bits of hive that globs up in my hands, I notice that its hexagons are much like windows to some other place. I peer inside—the hexagons are oracles that show the future. The collective buzz grows louder, but I continue looking deeper as tension in the home gets thicker. My fascination’s torn between two interdependent delineations of the cosmos: the immediate one in which I can observe my family tear themselves apart within our home under the oppressive droning of the hymenoptera; the microcosm in which orderly hives are constructed advantageously, subliminally, invasively in spite of us. Through the holes within the hexagonal latticework I can see the world outside—processions of disease, discord, and failure which imploded and dispers to level out completely. The anger and the shadow of the bees are boldly casting over and those emissaries of familial tension—the problems which I made a point to see through to the end, momentarily abandoned. I’m staring deep into the future; following a chaos spiral; shirking all responsibility of solving puzzles of the hive and home.


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Process News

Elytron Frass is part of the insect, excised. When not mimicking a human at its job, he studies occult and entomologic literature within his home and abroad. Self-taugh—his writings have appeared in Tarpaulin Sky, The Philadelphia Independent and Tim Peeler’s Third Lung Review.

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