Saturday, November 18, 2006

Something Missing and Bad Omens

The Rockrose Moon (A Serial Fiction) Part 21

This morning, thinking it might be a Tarot card, I pulled my wind blown fortune from an ivy bush. It was the four of spades.

I’ve not been able to shake the uncleanly feel of watching this middle aged man, very nondescript, basic dark blue windbreaker and cheap slacks, thinning mousey brown hair—look over his free copy of the newspaper with this predatory stare at a young blond, maybe 19, a sleepy student. He looked like his was imagining eating her alive.

I saw him a bit later going into Peet’s for expensive coffee.

I was reading an article in the December Vanity Fair about the art phenomenon in Paris, François-Marie Banier who was a gorgeous young man when he was my age. He has his own chef now and paints as well as having written novels, very bad plays and has been selling photographs for lots of money for almost 20 years.

He says, “And I was never as beautiful as they say I was. I was so angry, I had so much fire, acknowledging my beauty would have meant losing my strength. I would not have been able to fight my battles. But since psychoanalysis, I have lost my anger, and I have no more anxiety. Until I was 35, I kept the same face I had at 18. And now—I look like garbage! But I feel free—completely free.”

Martin Amis talks about something called “Higher Autobiography” in his memoir “Experience”.

“Writing about writers, writing about writing:…compulsive self-circlings…Something was missing:other people.”

Banier’s diary, which is rumored to be a masterpiece of social observation is to be published serially in France. He was a master at fawning on old, ancient artists past their day, Horowitz, Capote, Beckett but now hangs out with Johnny Depp and Kate Moss.

Amis says, “I knew Higher Autobiography was truly if temporarily unavoidable when I watched my father (Kingsley Amis) following down that road, against his inclination, against his past practice, and against his stated principles. He didn’t want to go there, but he went.”

Christian tells me there is a new open mic in town at a bar not far from where I work on Monday nights. He says I’ll hate it because it is a very smoky bar but that they will love my work and that I need to feel that people can love my work.

I don’t want to go there.


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