Crag Hill – The Words Start: An Autobiography

Crag Hill

The Words Start:
An Autobiography



With a smile, she saw nobody
too vain to make people

people finally forgot.
It was not so much transparent veils

on top of the wardrobe,
but all the formal opposition.

I love if no one else does.
God is here! My mother and I asked

for light, watch-chain strung across
grandfather’s halo. Late afternoon,

body erect, arms open, I would go
hurtling against his breath.

What if I make peepee
in holy-water? All the more precious

to be in danger.
What can be more simple?


I spring forward, egalitarian smile.
He was surely right, knew he was.

They were cutting his throat.
From statue-like face bewildered,

sentences emerged, swarmed
with syllables. I felt myself becoming

extra-lucid, mother of all reading.
After awhile I took me out of myself.

I put back those hard black words,
humus, a lean universe. My moods

threw me into states which escaped me,
afraid of wandering venomous

meanings richer than I realized.
I reported the facts, but to what

delirium I remained a child? I was
careful for knowledge, liked to please,

and I would recharge myself
absentmindedly and turn pages

as prayer mills. I had not understood
what had not affected me. Turning to

my solitude, wooden desk with bench,
there lurked that sick criminal

inscription, my politeness,
my respect. My voice began to whirl.


How could I have taken myself
into their intentions, their needs,

hopes, pleasures, my self coldly
separated from proud exile?

I suddenly felt ashamed of that well-
ordered world, Father making

his moods my law. I was my father’s
work, condemned beyond

impenetrability. I’m a dog. I yawn. I’m a
tree wind shakes vaguely. I fall,

start climbing the caress of time as it
goes — I feel it engulf, never think

flesh thoughts. God would have
managed a signed masterpiece.

That was more than I dared recognize
in the fashionable. By combined

twists and pluck, I was vitriolizing
myself in smiles. The remedy was

shelter against truth. My own
momentum seems clear, only one

unjustified hatred that caressed and
coddled. I plunged into words,

into generosity, a secret balm that
ends by poisoning.


I made a false entrance; I began my
birth again. Without a name I walk,

an unconscious screaming below.
I put her arms around my neck,

cross out everything for the sublime.
Universal order. What joy.

I found the world in which I was
absolute, decided to wait for blows

without hitting back, feigning cowardice,
my blazing and mortal future.

At twilight I would be back where
spirit blew, where things weren’t

going right. I was saved by meaning.



When two women sent off tears,
the girl didn’t give a damn about

the genius I dug up. But I had got a start.
Taking her eyes I would

sometimes answer: real walls,
bright but all in vain. To join things

up, less plagiarizing, I threw
the imaginary. The young fought

the sharks, the sea red, the desert with
guts sewn up under the name

of rule. As a hero, I became a harmless
tyrant myself. The next day

I would launch my characters
unfinished. With my first hall of

mirrors, “I” knew joy. It was too good
to last. By virtue of my

domestic steadiness, the craft of adult
activity, so ponderous at bottom,

so lacking in moment, disenchantment
turned me inside

thought — I was going down my
imaginary passions, their sole

function to provide me age
while I awaited maturity.


A white cloth, sparkling wine; I took a
glass, drank a toast to my health;

bare, dusty vastness expected nothing
more. We would continue dialogue,

each word deft little strokes.
I almost gave up the gist, unwise to

deny it entirely, unable to legitimize that
self. My illusion was that one is

born into the world with expectation.
I chewed at my innocence with the soul

of a set fire. Docile by custom,
I pulled my own bootstraps,

sickening dullness, peace of mind
an unpleasant encounter. Certain

ideas, assigned to a body, mankind
in hand, the wild beasts of full leisure

kill each truthless existence. Animality
required the relics of statues be

preserved in at least one living future.
Filthy twaddle: I gulped it standing.


My ambitions advance, thwarted to
depict pleasure. My bones are made

of flesh smells. I liked them enough but
to no avail. One never knows

who’s alive, silent, jealous, in exile,
annoyed in advance. You cold?

I would throw humility blinding
awareness. You never felt that time

was short? Do you answer partly
in defiance? Full of blood, deprive

death of its goal, life going quietly.
It was not entirely my mirage: When

death ceases forever to be a character,
the time of baptism, the time of

extreme unction, has exploded. No
further risks of unfolding, a bit of life

to it, relapses. His passions, his
blunders, his acts of resistance,

the light of information as the truth of
reconstruction. Short narratives,

the very ordinary but sensitive poison,
constantly inserting allusions,

contriving impossible tumult. He threw
his sob over their heads.


Pure forgotten masterpiece, I strutted
past their eyes, my own obituary.

After reading me anxiously, short of
beginning, when it came to bluff,

my trick, my insincerity, was constantly
grazing, but that was enough for me.

If someone had crept open to all
the winds, he busts a stray

multiplication, a rose call, some
historical maxims engraved on stiles,

mist hovering this sad single female
orphan. The words hero, martyr, not

repeated by any average intelligence,
exact sciences on the wane — I

detested these newcomers in jungle.
Gift of self became everyday reduced

to collective mists, the one big sun. That
epic of mediocrity took refuge

in the past, love-stained and dog-eared ruins. I
would forever be left king of

victims, all the more ecstasy
and delight. Brown fences or frail

cubical dried blood, a puritanical crime
and virtue, the righter of wrongs.


In public, a wink would be enough.
To share our amazement, we became

friends with his satanic likeness too
late to take this for its own sake.

Virtue had led actual fact, all but
withered in concealment. Momentary

paralysis, obsessed by this praise for
offering blame, for having only

reasoned distrust. It brought
the following state of extreme

emergency: everything absorbed me.
Slipping away with a shudder,

an arrow pierced time. I looked with
curiosity off the lake, those wavy

wastes my prow was cleaving.
For me, speed is distance covered in

a given rooting. Eager to prove
worthy of something better, I saw my

posthumous victory. To feel the slow
development of my stuffed soul,

I subordinated the past to the future,
transformed a revolutionary state of

crisis, became a traitor and threw
myself heart and soul.


I’ll repudiate myself. I fled love.
My whole output provided

hierarchy, only one masterpiece.
Yesterday I was blind; today

I’ve stopped progressing.
I look much the better out of pure chance.

The voices gathered together already dead,
the dismal sun of glory, its trajectory

crashing into the womb. Nevertheless,
I myself added to the collapse.

The prediction would dry a carcass.
The woeful little pretender, from chair

to chair, turns them aside. It’s time
nothing will come of, this cloudy

future in stagnant sensations.
Good God, only being in all creation,

open at random, a book so sad.
Far off, swinging from a branch,

I wanted to save myself to reveal
the rustling of words. I claim my old dreams

the unknown still inhabits and I don’t believe in

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