Fantastic Metropolis

Horrors By Waters

Jeffrey Ford

Somewhere in the mosquito troubled, sigh laden, endless blue night of Horrors By Waters, as the floating lanterns, each its own beacon of flame, embarked on the torpid current of the Meerswal like an armada of souls languidly wending its way back to birth, and 12,000 phosphorescent swifts the color of blood, bred and raised by the nuns of the island convent of Saint D’Alembert, made the sky a glowing, mosaic wound in honor of the recent victims of the brain blossom plague, after the hung men tap danced in the market square at the command of the vainglorious Bog Johnson, who, with a mind like a limestone spark and a heart like twenty toads, ruler by default of the somnambulant realm of Phardal, standing on the veranda of his palace, overlooking the hash wearied mob of revelers, took pleasure from the clockwork Lorelei, bent at the waist and ticking like a time bomb in her spinning brass gear state of arousal, Secmatte, of the pencil thin mustache, of the pale lemon moon face, of the gap toothed smile, main proponent of the philosophy of Last Cause, the belief that things begin with their ending, drawing their start forward through time like a magnet as if they were Horrors By Waters in its inception at the break of dusk an eternity before, waited, sipping port in the outdoor café next to the cathedral, across the street from the palace, whispering beneath the roar of the merriment, in the midst of the half-sleeping crowds, a prayer for Lorelei, for his lovely, copper breasted, electric cunt creation with only two thoughts on her mind, tick and tock, to explode, scattering Johnson’s flesh and bone, and give birth to a moment of false sun that might trick awake the world that had dozed too long through its dark holiday, Horrors By Waters, the nightmare of a lonely man with a heart like twenty toads croaking the fear seeded lays of slumber.

Copyright © 2001 by Jeffrey Ford.