Dark Arts and Crafts
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☦An accidental sorcery. AWCY as a latent phenomenon.☦

I used to see abstracts, nonsense, but somehow I understood. It was an instinct, an intuition; less like the bird knowing to build a nest, more like the twigs knowing how to become one. There was something magical to the way I interfaced with it. Each piece was a tiny fragment of the universe, and some of them hinted about it, or had a vignette from its history. A shattered mirror, twinkling in impossible hues. These things were intentional and accidental and incidental and absolute, and sometimes I found some occult wisdom lying around in the street.

Have you heard of the elephant that did abstract paintings? I went to visit it at the zoo because I thought that was interesting. I surprised myself. I'm cynical and I usually pass those things off, but I went and watched the elephant paint. I thought it was clever. The paintings gave me happy feelings, so much so that I bought one.

I hung new paintings up facing my bed. It helped me absorb them since they were the last and first thing I saw every day. I liked to think they influenced my dreams. I had a single dream during this painting's stint on the back wall. This dream was mostly colour. Colour, memory, and a strong taste of copper. There were no words, or sound, or touch, simply being… or, perhaps, simply not. This dream was different. I woke up excited.

I experienced. Trillions of people converging, dancing across vast distances, finally disappearing into a vanishing point. In the end I opened my eyes to see the elephant’s painting past the foot of my bed. In that context, the painting made sense. The elephant, I thought, must have had the same dream.

Other things made weird sense to me. I saw a broken mirror in a restroom. I felt that if I stayed long enough the person on the other side might start talking to me. Of course that didn’t happen, but when I fell asleep I could see Earth through a looking glass; tumbling evermore down an endless rabbit hole.

The girl next-door. Every day she left the building with a mischievous smile on her face. I can’t describe what I saw that night; but I woke in the morning with pins and needles down my throat. I felt like we saw it together.

One day I saw her leave with a man who smiled the same smile, and I thought I wouldn’t see her for a long time after that.

I saw holes in a tightly stretched canvas. On the pavement there were spots of light where moths had eaten away. In my dreams I heard beams of light twisting through space; I saw screaming echoes of glorious tulips. My eyelids parted to taste the sun.

I wondered about the girl I saw earlier; Did the sun's gaze flow into her apartment, too?

I looked for answers.

Her room was completely furnished, knick knacks and all. Was she whisked away? Did she die? All that was left there were her memories and my approximation of them. I could see from her textbooks that she was studying economics, and that she went to the local college. A framed photo of a man who certainly wasn't the man I saw her with before. Who was the other man? The man in the photo looked like it was her boyfriend. I figured it was so.

I didn’t dream that night. I saw nothing like a singularity, or a single pillar of light, or a broken reflection. I expected that I was on some sort of trail, and that was where the next clue would be. What I thought was magic turned out to be a day trip in my head, and here I was trespassing on someone else’s life.

No more dreams. I got tired of the little bits of stellar history lying around my studio apartment. I got cynical again. I resented the elephant painting and the cosmic mystery I imagined.

Then the girl was back. I just glimpsed her turning a corner one day, and I could hear her arguing on the floor below me. When I left yesterday morning, she was screaming at someone in the hallway.

This isn’t the same!

It was the man in the photo. She turned around and started crying. The man seemed frustrated and scared. He looked a lot like her.

Why isn't this the same?

The man she left with long ago turned the corner with a middle aged woman.

She's not smiling.

The pair kissed at the foot of the stairs.

Why isn't she smiling?

The girl screamed at her brother, then seized and kissed him.

This is not her world.

Endorphins swam around in my head. I began to grin. I cried and laughed and I didn’t care about the looks they gave me. This was an accident. A masterpiece. I performed a miracle.

I understood how we exist in their memory… and other people exist in ours. My memories of her were wrong, but now they are absolute.

That night I could hardly sleep, but I dreamed. I dreamed of the things escaping into a distant spot. I saw them funnel out of the other end. They were screaming, crude reflections of what they were. I woke up and lay staring at the ceiling, lightheaded.

I disposed of some garbage; my room was empty but for the paintings. Happy little elephant scribblings all over the walls and roof and floor. I went to the zoo and I purchased every single painting they had and the brilliant splashes of colour were everything.

It is a fine thing to be a patron of the arts.

I went to sleep and I woke up and between the two was everything. The girl lived with her brother and the man had moved away. She cried and he cried and they cried because the world was not their own and they knew it.

I started to make art of my own. I bought some paint and some horsehair paintbrushes and some gloriously beautiful white paper and I started to apply some colour, but they didn't mix the right way and it all came out wrong.

I went to sleep and I woke up and the green light of the sun flowed through every window. Meanwhile the universe tried to make sense of my art, so the girl next door and the boyfriend that was the brother sat and giggled and looked into each other's eyes and saw nothing but each others' retinas. The elephant paintings covered the roof and the floor and the walls and the sink and the lights and my clothes and my flesh and the world.

I wish I could paint like the elephant did.

I went to sleep and I woke up and my dreams were pyrite and sulphur. The boyfriend and his sister smiled and grinned and skipped in tune. I picked up the horsehair paintbrush with my trunk and flayed the flesh of the rough-hewn canvas with whips laced with black and blue and red and a shade of being that words are not enough for.

I went to sleep and I woke up and my paintings were not enough and so I took a brush to myself and painted my grey skin and the blue light of the sun on my indigo paint mixed with the red of the coupling next door and it all mixed into a single hue and had the consistency of vomit twice removed.

I went to sleep and I woke up.

I went to sleep and I woke up.

I went to sleep and I woke up.

I went to sleep.

Uncountable infinities of light swam into impossible oneness. An errant thought: wouldn't it be nice to dance among the fairies? The lights cackled and shone and whispered foreign words down my throat and the words became mine and the world felt like nothing.

I disappeared into the distance and never woke up.

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