TARPAULIN SKY V4n2
Looking for Something
Something's in here somewhere. It's got to be it has to be. Oh whither
oh whither oh where oh whither oh what.
It is a thing inside or is it only just the way, the only one we've feared and known and not wanted to know, out? Is it that? Is it only that?
For the outer layer a knife will do, a kitchen knife, a cut 'n' paste
scissors, a number of things we have at home, but then it, that is I, would
need a saw or something. The cutting part will sting and hurt and so on but
then hopefully the sawing part will right off the bat get the part that
hurts, that knows how to hurt and sends the signals and so on will get got
and I won't feel anything.
The part that needs to be cut is not the part that hears and these days
they can be very precise, what with all this new technology, veritable
miracles they say! cutting only the parts that need it at least I hope. So
maybe I would hear it, the whir like a dentist drill the buzz like a saw
like a plane starting up like a lawn mower like a car that won't turn over
and they keep pushing on the gas until it just dies. I will ask Him for an
anesthetic, a complete, general, knock me into next year anesthetic and if
He tells me there are risks, that I might not wake from that, I will say,
Fine by me and thank you very much.
There's got to be something that's doing whatever is done.
Is it bigger than a bread box?
That would take up a lot of room. Even a very small one. A mouse or gerbil or rat or hamster, even a tiny one would not have very much room to run. It must have some set-up like those circle things they run around on. Where does it sleep? I know it sleeps sometimes. (I love it when that happens). Maybe it just sleeps in the bottom of the inside of that circle, curled up like a moon, its little pink feet with its tiny rodent fingers slightly curled, its tiny eyes closed, its tail wrapped. It tries to get out sometimes. I hate it when it does that but I also feel sorry for it. Living in such a tiny place, all cramped and all alone with nothing to do but run on that circle and sleep and eat. I know what it eats.
Someone needs to go in and get it out
Hand me the scalpel, hand me the knife
Oh damnit, just give me a rope.
Rebecca Brown's eleventh book, The Last Time I Saw You, was published by City Lights in 2006. Brown is also the author of Woman in Ill-Fitting Wig, a collaboration with painter Nancy Kiefer available at pistilbooks.net. Brown’s memoir, Excerpts from a Family Medical Dictionary, was published by Granta Books, (UK), University of Wisconsin Press (USA), and Asahi Shimbun, Japan. Among her other books are the memoir-in-essays, The End of Youth and the fictions, The Dogs: A Modern Bestiary, Annie Oakley's Girl, and The Terrible Girls all with City Lights, and The Gifts of the Body, (HarperCollins).