This short extract is for Alok, from Dispatches.
This is the beginning of Makbara ( cemetery in Arabic) and I wanted to share the music of this opening. I have tried Eliot's technique of Auditory imagination, reading it aloud without concentrating, without trying to know what is being said but how.
in the beginning was the cry : alarm, anguish, terror, chemically pure pain? : prolonged, sustained, piercing, to the limits of the tolerable: phantom, specter, monster from the nether world: a disturbing intrusion at any event: disruption of the urban rhythm, of the harmonious chorus of sounds and voices of supernumearies and beautifully dressed actors and actresses: an oneiric apparition: an insolent brutish defiance: a strange, transgressive presence: a radical negation of the existing order: an index finger pointed accusedly at the happy, self confident Euricraticonsuming city: with no need to raise his eyes, strain his voice, extend his beggar's hand with a black gesture of Luciferan pride: absorbed in the obverse side of the spectacle he is creating:indifferent to the horror he inspires as he passes by: a virus contaminating the collective body of the city in the Wake of his delirious journey through it: dusky, bare feet, insensitive to the rigors of the season: ragged, threadbare pants with improvised skylight's at the knees: a scarecrow's overcoat with the collar raised to conceal a double absence: walking, lost in sel-contemplation. down the sidewalk of the boulevard teeming with humanity: past the tobacco store, the haberdasher;s shop, the terrace of the cafe restaurant, the slot machine parlour: