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The Songs Of Peter Sliadek Prologue

A road should be observed from a birds eye view. Its very beautiful a road from above. No dust, no potholes; a cheapjack went along, lost a ribbon. Take it, braid a girls hair. The roadside flows with July honey, February cream, November gruel, Mays motley wave. Callosities, weariness, a hedgehog in the breast remained below, on a road a bird above the road wouldnt understand it. To it, to a martin-hawk, to a skinny little bird or to a sharp-beaked bully, the road seems to be the most wonderful thing in the world. How different from this road is an everyday sky: the wings tremble, the enemies dont rest, an arrow awaits, in the cloud its cold, above the cloud no food... Thats why birds squint enviously at silly wayfarers: just look at them walking!..

People should be observed from afar. Out of a window, for instance; still better if the window is at the very top of a tower. Its very absorbing: people from a distance. A knight doesnt smell of garlic and booze, a princess doesnt seem to be a bitch pregnant from a stableman, and those you come across never try to give you a smack in the teeth with their fist instead of sharing wine during a rest. Small men carry pick-a-back small stories lying, contradictory and momentary, gathered together in a spinners yarn. Thread after thread, they weave the tapestry of one big and wonderful Story. Sit in the tower, look out of the window, admire it. What a pity that there are draughts in the tower, the roof leaks, mice rustle in the corners, and at night fears sit on the edge of the lonely bed. In such a case the knights stench will pass for valour, and the bitch-princess or any other wench from Lesser Brubulanz will pass for luck, if only she be warm and freckled. You drag yourself to the window in the morning, glance at the ones below and even choke from the cold in the pit of your stomach: just look at them walking...

Life should be observed from aside. From heavenly heights, that is. Then it looks like a fully accomplished and harmonic artifact, a creation of a winged genius, not like a total mess made by some simpleton. Looking from inside youll discern nothing in life clearly. Vanity, vexation of the spirit, crumbs in a crumpled sheet; some gather stones, other cast them away, while yet others sincerely love their neighbour with that stone on the head. And above all you cannot look at the conception. You cannot perceive it as a whole. You snatched a crust? Chew it, choke on it, and dont open your mouth for the whole loaf. Not for you loaves are baked.

So why is it that dont you manage, dont succeed: a road from above? People from a window? Life from aside? If its so much better? Cleaner? Lovelier? You go, raise dust, cough, wonder at yourself. Roll along stupid thoughts in your head. The thoughts rumble, rattle, jump like wagon wheels on potholes. You look from behind your hand: is it still far? Yes, it is.

Its good that it is far.

What is far looks much better from here.


Henry Lion Oldie Here and Now | Here and Now | Here and Now