Friday, November 9, 2012

The Granulate Hotel Episode

(Abysmal Terror, in ’99) Written in Lima, Peru, 1-10-2009; based on similar events taking place at the time
(Rewritten as ‘Resurrecting Jonathan’, 11/2011)

He had listened to the voice without interrupting. He was speaking to him slowly, and as his voice faded, his body seemed thicker than a wall, and the man’s voice sent back an occasional echo.
       He regarded himself as frozen in place; thus, the young man was forced to listen—; consequently, without embarrassment. Otherwise, he’d not had been able to tell the police the part of this story he endured. The rest of the story the girl across the hall, and the police would fill him in on, upon his complete revivification. 

       It was a stranger’s path he had crossed that afternoon, in a bar, in Miraflores, Lima, and an American male with two Peruvian friends, feeling no need to shoo away the company. He didn’t know he’d be wrapped in the anonymous cloak of a strange scheme; these three were up to something. And when he’d cast off the cloak of darkness, removing the unknown, such things are never brought back to its normality, and life never the same.
       The waiter informed the young American, pointed out to him—one of the three men put something into his drink, then they all three up and left the bar. What the waiter did not tell him was that there were three other persons, a man and two women also interested in him in the bar (not knowing of course their intent).
       The two women were rather on the hefty and broad side; they had blue jeans on, both had a medical bag, both under thirty years old. They rather looked alike, yet didn’t clash.
       The man had his back turned away from the waiter, and Jonathan.
       “I thought it would interest you,” said the waiter, “because I heard you speaking English, with the two Peruvians.”
       Involuntarily, Jonathan exchanged a glance with one of the two hefty women, followed by a look of near stale indifference by her, as if she couldn’t care less. He then looked cautiously, peering around the room in all directions, and within his head, the voices within the bar, seemingly turned into whispers, innumerable near silent exchanges.

       Within the following fifteen minutes, He discovered himself at his Four Star Hotel, opening up his door to his room His head in miseries.
       It was imperceptible, impossible closing of his eyelids. He heard voices over him—without the slightest sign of interest to his moaning.  
       “We know who you are,” said a woman’s voice, “bring me the smaller seizers,” she told her female accomplice, as she continued to do whatever she was doing, calmly.
       “Where’s … (a pause) said the first voice to the accomplice, making a gesture.
       “He’s guarding the door,” said the accomplice.
       They needed less than an hour in the apartment; dusk had fallen, and the windows and curtains had been closed by the male member. Also the man by the door had turned off all the lights, all but the one by the bed, where Jonathan lay paralyzed as the operation took place.

       Had anyone rang, it wouldn’t have mattered, Jonathan couldn’t have answered—but Georgina from across the hall had seen all, everything, and called the police, but she knew it would take them hours to come, if they came at all. They seldom took such calls serious (and more often than not, they were not the solution, rather part of the problem).
       For half an hour she sat waiting, listening to the sounds from across the hall. Immense feelings of dread, loss came over her, helplessness, it wasn’t painful I mean, more like a dim shadow creeping over her from under the door across the hall, into her room, she felt as if she wanted to swallow up the police for not showing up. That whatever they were doing to him, they could do to her, to anyone without regard for their liberties.
       And in the mist of all this, Jonathan, in helpless desolation, became empty inside, weighting less than before. And the next step would sink the scales of repair probability into the sea, forevermore lost.

       “Fill them up with gauze!” said the hefty surgeon, to her accomplice.
       The man was half asleep leaning against the door, wakened by the sound of voices on the street, and then they disappeared into the entrance of the hotel.
       “Be quick,” said the surgeon.  “We can go now,” she added in the second moment.
        “We’ll meet in San Juan Miraflores,” said the man, “I left my suitcase there at the Hostel, near the ‘Cristo Redentor’ church and park next to it, around the corner, under the name Garcia.
       “Pay your bill and go to another hotel, call me on the cell then,” said the Surgeon.

       They went out the back door of the hotel unseen, except for the eyes of the neighbor across the hall. The police showed up, a warm feeling came over Georgina. She opened the door, the layer of paleness that had stretched out over her face, still showed, but her eyes sparkled.
       “Something was going on in that apartment, I saw one man and two women enter and leave, they’ve been in there for a bit over an hour with a young gringo, what took you so long?” she questioned, knowing she was not going to get an answer, and just a stare which 
       the police did not reply as expected, as was normal practice for them, and knocked on the door as she; the young female kept talking, as if the whole matter involved a murder. Then the door opened, it hadn’t been locked.
       A foot inside the door she muttered words that sounded like a prayer. When the police turned on the lights, she held her breath; the young man was laying on his bed, on his back, bandages over his eyes.
       “What are you waiting for?” she questioned the police.
       They kind of knew now what had taken place; it didn’t baffle them any, as it had Georgina.
       Jonathan, druggy, slow in motion, trying to get his senses back, lifted his body upward with what strength in his hands he had left, said, “Whose here, what’s going on?”  Then leaning his back against the backboard of the bed, his mind reactivated from his hour long endure, and slightly dimmed hangover, came out of his dilemma. “What the hell is going on here?” he demanded and shouted, again; now feeling the gauze over his eyes; tarring the gauze and its holding tape out from his eye sockets.
       “Please calm down young man,” said one of the officers, he knew what had taken place; it was a new kind of business going on in Lima.
       Georgina fainted, the surgeon had stolen his eyes, they would within a short period of time be sold on the black market.

#834  Originally written in 2008, and rewritten in a shorter version 11/24/2011, based on actual events taking place in 2006, in Lima, Peru, fictionalized here by the author.   #555

The Repulsion of La Merced

(A Cthulhu Account!)

Found only in ancient manuscripts is the word ‘Cthulhu’ meaning ‘horror of horrors.’ A horror that numbs you, one that defies even Satan the Devil, the decipherment of the word can entangle both the pawn and the prey; it reduces human existence to a weak and stale plight. Thus, in this following story, one that is based on fact and considered by the author as historical fiction—in that he was not present, and nobody can put the whole story together completely and honestly. Hence, having to add or fill in the gaps, he has fictionalized with his imagination the areas of this account with his own descriptiveness, his own adjectives, that in which he feels belong to the story. This account takes place in November, of 2008, we will see a jealous mindless monster in motion, and the pawn will be devoured (names have been changed).

       I will tell you of Naomi, She left Andahuaylas, Peru, in the Andes crossing into the Mantaro Valley and Huancayo, on November 3, 2008, on her way to La Merced, her troubles forgotten—for the most part— unknowing as she neared the city of La Merced, once there a jealous and dangerous threat would engulf her life.
       As she reached her destination (having taken a bus), La Merced, being in the central jungle of Peru, near Satipo, she went to find the domicile of her half-sister, and brother-in-law, to live with them as she sought work in the planting fields, assuming she’d be welcomed wholeheartedly. Once she found the residence, she knocked on the door. A man slowly opened it—and with a long silent stare, and a long parade of glimpses from the soles of her feet to her bosoms, all the way to the top of her head, eyeing her every inch, she said “I am Naomi,” for a moment thinking perhaps he, Cesar, Laura’s husband had forgotten what she looked like. They had not seen one another for a number of years.
       He had then asked her in—smiling, giving her a kiss on the cheek, as his mind and inners whirled with glittering visions of romance. His eyes read: it was not going to be the drab day (or days to follow), as he had expected. Life would soon change; she was to his liking, with nice features, and with a youthful attractive shape, even a tinge on the meek to timid side of life—again to his liking.
        With the greetings over and very little said, her half-sister brought Naomi to her private bedroom. Then as evening developed, while at the dinner table, Laura noticed her husband had taken the liberty of returning faint like glimpses toward her half-sister, although there was a misconception here, Naomi was not participating in this game—these glimpses were  unnoticed by Naomi—for the most part, or not taken seriously. In addition, Laura’s husband continued this most serious game, nightly.

       And so during the following week, Laura put on an invisible mask, to hide her jealousy, not that her half-sister was feeding into her husband’s scheme, but jealous manifestations of that illusion entangled her imagination to think so (but fundamentally it was not true).
       It was during the second week, towards the end of it, that Laura could no longer bridge the gulf of evil she had created towards Naomi—the hatred that was boiling within her fiber—an awful blackness, layers of numbed blackness—the ‘Cthulhu’ kind. Her heart now pounding, pulsating like voodoo drums, an unstable mind unable to  bridge the gap back to sanity, her spirit spinning, shaking her every bone for vengeance to stop this creature from subduing her husband, she had devised her plan—
       Laura was now overcome, mad if not possessed. Moreover, seemingly obsessed with the picture she had drawn inside her brain. Along with an insecure ego, and fear of losing her husband; blood burning like lit firewood in a heath throughout her bubbling hot veins, pulling at her hair when alone in a private room, until the roots gave in, and dropped out, she was ready for her ‘Cthulhu’ misdeed. It would have seemed—to an onlooker, a spectator—she was more a product of a lost primitive race, a dim and long forgotten evolution of the Neanderthal.   

       Oh, far, far—far off was her mind this night, when she woke up in the wee hours, took a heavy handled slug hammer, red-eyed, with a slayers heart, the hammer swaying back and forth, as she crept into Naomi’s room. Causally she bent over the bed her half-sister lay sleeping in, lurking, laying in wait, with her distorted mind for the Cthulhu moment. Now staring at the face of her half-sister—mumbling quietly ‘banshee  whore, banshee whore…’, listening to her-half sister’s  breathing, she lifted the sledge hammer with one hand, as if it was a feather, as if she had found a hidden strength somewhere inside her body, for this very moment. Then with the other hand, she grabbed the long wooden handle to secure it, to aim it perfectly over her head. She wanted to produce in her cerebellum an inane chaos, before she stepped into the horrifically primordial everlasting darkness, called death. It was as if a beast haunted her and that beast  recognized the mark she was  to strike, and  like a great wind, she struck that mark: once on her younger sister’s forehead, the temple, the nose, she struck several times, bone breaking blows, and sent her into an outer darkness, yet she  existed.
       The following day she had died in the hospital. Yet, driven only by some restless whim, to show her half-sister, her slayer, she would not die instantly, against all cosmic laws—to leave a lasting remembrance for her half-sister’s brain—thus, I repeat, she  remained in this world, one day longer—thereafter, like a crushed worm, she passed on.

Written 11-16-2008, after leaving La Merced, a few weeks later, the author was inspired by actual events turning up in newspaper reports of a killing that had taken place, thus following up on the murder, he was inspired to write the short story, “The Repulsion of La Merced”; if for anything reason, for posterity; reedited and slightly revised for publication, 10-23-2011, and again on 12-1-2011, dedicated to License (Director)  Nola and Dr. Sebastian (done in a semi form of Poetic Prose).   #553

The Thing under the House

I have found my house inhabited by some terrible things, ugly things, in particular one thing. My thoughts are very confusing on this matter. There is even some apprehension as to where they begin. For at times I have appalling visions of faces within the marble bathroom floor, many faces of this  creature—in lack of a better term, demonic. This creature, or beast or whatever, alien of some sort, long dead, now stretching behind me some twenty-years since I built the house.  In consequence, I am somehow convinced there formless faces in the marble, in the blue and white marble tiles in my bedroom, bathroom, are trying to communicate. But what, what do those faces want to tell me: perhaps displeasure, anger, or just torment me.
       I have some vague impressions that some eerie and strange terrible thing took place under the foundation of my house eons ago.
       The identity of these faces is bewildering, cloudy, perhaps suffered some great shock, and could even be alien.
       When my wife and I were building the house, we had found old monstrous bones, and one huge ancient skull, also some artifacts, we took none. Surely they had been born from an incredible people long before the Incas, long before civilization as we know it, existed, perhaps 17,000-years ago, so my archeologist friend suggested. Of course it was all a worm-riddled experience—finding them bones. 
       I remember when I found them—in a dimly lit cave, under my house, as we dug out the foundation, in Miraflores, Lima Peru—seemingly it was at one time, perhaps during the last Ice Age, at one time, this cave was part of a river, it was an idea that came to mind, and once I crawled into it, so it appeared to reach back endlessly.
       “Tell no one of this find, just build your house over it, fill the side of the cave, up with stones and dirt and cement,” my friend told me, “lest you want the government to take your land and use it as they please, and give you not one dollar.” And I took this to heart, I took his advice, and did as he said, built over the site.
       And now the skull and the bones with some kind of artificial flesh, dripping flesh that appeared on them, was in the marble tile floor within my bathroom, next to my bedroom.

       There is a fascination to be penned by those faces, strange ancient beyond the three dimensional—

       The hideous conclusion: my mind being confused, reluctant, came to an awful certainty, if not lost in its labyrinth, not able to turn in any direction without seeing  these faces—faces my wife could not see—perhaps I had second sight, who’s to say, an awakening for me if so—nonetheless, faces I could only see, I took a slug hammer and broke the marble tiles to smithereens, now in small fragments—that nevermore should I behold those faces and in particular that hug skull, with eyes drooping, hanging out of its sockets, and string like flesh, as if part mold.
       My reason could no longer entertain the slightest belief, this was real, and surely my mind was playing tricks: so I pondered, deliberated on. Then I put in new black marble tiles in its place—hope had departed. Hence, I was indoctrinated to the life form of the paranormal.

       I had frequently read on such matters, and got only a small satisfaction from them. And now here I stood, as the saying goes: in the belly of the whale, it was true, gospel true; there were other dimensions, forms of life. In any case, I remained quiet, lest I lose my bearings. My wife didn’t know how to comfort me, nor did she have a solution, other than referring me to a psychologist, and she dare not say that, for I am one.
       For this reason, I then reflected, like walking backwards, came to the conclusion, I had disturbed their ancient grave site, twenty-years prior. This was true, gospel true, so I took it upon myself to talk to the faces, yes, as bland as it sounds that was my next and only step I could think of, and I said in a bold manner:  
       “I am sorry I disturbed your resting place, but what is done is done, what I will do now is this, I will sell the house to the archeologist, he has always wanted this house, not for the house but for your bones, so he will tear down the house and take your bones and all and put them on display at a museum for all to see, to gawk at—this is your ultimate fate, should you not go back to your resting place: for this I am certain.”
       And faster than a clap of an eye, those faces disappeared. My impression of the whole matter was that those faces, those spirits behind those faces were so angry at me, they had gone mad under the circumstances, not realizing twenty-years had passed, I mean to the dead what is twenty-years, and they just hadn’t stopped to think, things could be worse.

#966 (9-23-2012) 

The Butcher of Lima

(or, ‘Lunch with Mario Poggi’)


It is true that I have asked Mario Poggi, the renowned psychologist of Peru, over to my house for lunch, that he had served a long term of person time for strangling one of his patients to death, the very one, infamous one they call the “The Butcher of Lima,” and it is true on several occasions I have purchased some of his art work, to help him live, his credentials as a professional have been taken away from him.  Matter of fact, he even had me talk to one of his patients once—better said, counsel him once.
       And yet I hope to show by this short narrative that perhaps he is not the murderer we all claim him to be; or the madman he is so often referred to by the media, and the many people I’ve talked to.
       Was he the murderer of the Butcher of Lima? Who killed half dozen victims? If so, who was madder, him or the Butcher? I do hope some of my readers will weigh this statement. Correlate it with the known facts, and ask: which horror is worse; his or the Butcher of Lima’s?
       Perhaps there is madness in both, even the courts were at their wits’ end to account for that last terrible killing—Poggi’s murder; yet all of Lima, all 7.5 million inhabitants of Lima, were frightened of the Butcher, until Mario Poggi the prison psychologist, was accused of stepping behind a chair, and pulling off his belt, and strangling him to death, as the Butcher of Lima had done so many times to his victims, without an ounce of remorse: monkey see monkey do, that perhaps was the Butcher’s poetic justice. 
       They tried weekly to concoct a theory: hauntingly reminiscent of the Butcher’s submerged evil and crazed human nature, bleak gallows humor: a ghastly jest to warn other behavior science helpers to do the right thing, and perhaps a little pressure from the good Samaritans called: the  Human Rights Groups, that feel, even if the truth is something infinitely more terrible and incredible, the servant of the people—in this case the lonely creature who struggles vainly to express the inexpressible—Mario Poggi, that knows the Butcher’s mind better than him, himself, who lives in a dreamlike vacuum, will kill again, again and again, will crawling on, on and on,  endlessly waiting for his victims—he too, must  be punished.
       So it is said, Poggi murdered the Butcher while in custody at a mental ward, while in prison, under his care, but had you asked Poggi, I do believe he would have told you, and he did say so on occasions, and inferred to me: he avenged the dead, the ones the Butcher killed, and the ones he was going to kill—the ones he was waiting for, clinging on hope that relief may be just around the corner, to kill more. But you see he didn’t give the Butcher that chance to name the new victims, whom he would have put onto his list—after he had gotten out of prison.  Perhaps a curious phenomenon, that seemed forced upon him—forced upon Poggi
       What Poggi was really saying is: he stopped the purge; he did not allow the Butcher’s lawyers, or legal assistance, to loosen untold terrors on all of Lima again.

       There are many color zones within shadows close to our daily paths, some are black, others grey, some white and only slightly visible, on a rainy day, less than visible. Sometimes evil, good evil, if there is such a thing, might come under a greyer zone in the color spectrum—perhaps, white, or an unseen color passes through; when that occurs the person who is aware, and knowledgeable, usable and available, must strike before reckoning befalls humanity—; you see he sees what you don’t see, the Government does this more often than not, more than anyone else they do not wait for tomorrow, or perhaps the day after tomorrow, they can’t, it is called: in the Interest of National Security. It must be done you see, before a city proper, the whole city, nation, perhaps the whole nation, suffers the consequences—again and again and again. This of course cannot be seen by the naked eye, or the naked mind—grotesquely attempting to face evil with evil, like Poggi did.

       I have known Poggi now for a number of years, perhaps ten in all, he is most phenomenal, a scholar; also, perhaps having a strange secretive inner life: as a younger person, with imagination that gave him freedom.  At any rate, his adult learning was with the intention of doing good I do believe, not bizarre things as he ended up doing; his odd genius developed a remarkable sensation, a sinister ill-regard for a greatly retarded killer. But society said: you are equal to the Butcher—figuratively speaking that is, but he never shaped any tragedy beyond killing the killer—if indeed that is a tragedy: that is the big difference, where the Butcher was in a world of forbidden necrophagous, or perhaps equal: necrophilia and necromancy (feeding on corpses, fascination with death, communicating with spirits).
       When Poggi talked to me his voice was soft, and light, and his somewhat now dull life, perhaps better said, unexercised life gave him stoutness, more so than a paunchiness, and now past middle age.  He was not in good health, yet still a handsome face, green hair, notable gallant, a shyness to him which brought him to a closer seclusion. Still fairly well-known, I was perhaps one of his better and less critical friends, and we talked an inexhaustible quarry of vital theoretical topics, ate a good lunch, coffee a little wine, and whatever matters he did not wish to refer to his innocence or guilt, he was injured by some odd psychological woe, perhaps affliction, for doing society good in a bad way. 
       As we talked and after he left and we met again several times—along with meeting his wife and daughter, he seemed to feel some sort of bizarre exhilaration as if he escaped from some unseen bondage, he began to mingle more despite his heavy blackmail from society and the courts, and from others for his crime.
       He was no longer beating against a midnight window, as if in the rain trying to save himself, he was forsaking reality, descending into the command of his inner voice, he was living among tramps and wanderers, he no longer had much talent for happiness; everything was out of habit and routine, the cancer of time, just waiting to die.
       The last time I saw him, he looked as if he was on drugs, he had gotten a divorce, and was no longer seeing his child—to my knowledge; his look and his mind told me: there were no more countless matters to be adjusted; philosophically speaking—he was one of the lost and confused souls of this planet.

#967 (9-26-2012)

Note: the author communicated with Mario Poggi between 2002 and 2010 perhaps
on a dozen occasions.  The sketch is by the author, D. L. Siluk, taken from a sculpture he purchased by Mario Poggi, in 2005.       

La Agonía de la Gran Tortuga de Barro (Un Cuento Poético)

 Por el Dr. Dennis L. Siluk


Una gran tortuga levantó su cabeza
—desde las oscuras pero carmesí entrañas de la tierra—
su cabeza como de piedra
con una larga lengua venenosa colgada
y sus ojos grises profundos en desesperación
miraron fijamente, sólo miraron fijamente.

     “Crueles, celosos y egoístas son los hombres”,
dijo ella con una sonrisa fallida…
Su cuerpo exterior (su caparazón),
estaba carbonizado por el intenso calor de la tierra.

     “¿Cuáles son tus penas?”,
preguntó el hombre a esta gigantesca figura.

La  Gran Tortuga de Barro respondió:
     “No puedo sostener o equilibrar el mundo.
 ¡Ya no! Hay demasiado concreto,
calles, edificios, guerras, bombas;
el cambio de equilibrio en todo el mundo,
está rompiendo mi espalda,
está penetrando en mi escondite,
está atormentando mi carácter
y no quiero ser obligada a la opresión”.

Pero a los hombres en la tierra
no les importaría aunque preguntarían otra vez
¿Por qué?


     “El amor no se busca a sí mismo para complacer
ni se interesa por sí mismo; y yo,
yo te he amado incluso mientras estaba desesperado
(porque la tierra y el hombre están vinculados como uno,
yo, bien, soy sólo una tortuga de barro,
observadora del equilibrio entre el hombre y la tierra,
porque la tierra y yo estamos vinculados,
porque la tierra es lodo y el hombre es tierra,
todos nosotros somos uno)
Bueno, sí—tú ves—te he amado,
yo te he amado incluso mientras estaba desesperado
incluso mientras estaba pisoteado por tus pesados pies,
y tú aún, sólo buscabas complacerte a ti mismo,
aún durante la pérdida de otro; así,
la vida para el hombre no es sagrada,
es sólo él: a pesar del cielo o el infierno,
él no se doblega”.

(La vieja tortuga tomó un suspiro profundo,
ella estaba exhausta y después continuó:)

     “A él le dieron la primavera para disfrutar,
mañanas dulces para sobrellevar,
flores para cultivar alrededor y embellecer.
¿No siembra él sus noches para dormir?
¿No ara él  sus sueños sin tristeza?
Esto, mi amigo, es debido al equilibrio,
yo,  la luna,  el sol,  la tierra,  el cielo
e incluso el infierno, ya que el cielo
elimina sus pesadillas”.


Después de escuchar esto,
 los hombres de la tierra,
soltaron a la Gran Tortuga de Barro,
de sus cadenas atadoras (en nombre de la libertad)
esperando que ella recuperara su satisfacción
pero ella se fue para no encontrarla,
y por eso, el equilibrio de la tierra
se tambaleó de un lado a otro,
fuera de sus ejes, y,
terremotos, huracanes, actividades volcánicas
y mucho, mucho más, llamados desastres naturales,
prevalecieron alrededor del globo
(los glaciares se derritieron, las montañas se cayeron,
los océanos rugieron y el cielo ardió como infierno)
y entonces, entonces el hombre supo,
que él se había maldecido a sí mismo,
por tal labor imprudente…
desencadenando a la  Gran Tortuga de Barro,
llamándola el Diablo,
entonces vino el invierno eterno,
no hubo calor  en el aire,
ni tampoco las lluvia cayeron,
para espanto del hombre…!


Un profeta vino sobre la tierra
(en su penoso séptimo invierno)
y dijo al hombre:
     “Debajo de uno de aquellos árboles
allá en los bosques inmensos
(apuntando hacia los grandes bosques)
según lo sé, ¡hay una pequeña tortuga joven!,
quien no sabe de tu daño,
de tu corazón ni de tu creciente desesperación…
Te llevaré hacia el árbol:
¡Te mostraré dónde está!”

Preguntó el hombre lleno de enfado y odio,
     “¿Es esta tortuga hijo de la Gran Tortuga de Barro?
Pero el viejo profeta
no respondió y continuó:

     “Como te iba diciendo,
es mejor que tú encuentres a esta tortuga joven,
ella tiene los medios para equilibrar la tierra
(ya que ella tiene esa caparazón resistente),
aunque ella no sabe esto,
pero esto será para ti y para ella,
algo que tendrán que trabajarlo juntos”.

Pero el orgullo del hombre
era fuerte —como un león—
y  su corazón estaba lleno de enojo.

Así, ellos ahorcaron al viejo profeta,
donde estuvo…¡desgraciadamente!
Difíciles fueron los tiempos
a partir de entonces.

Y llegó a pasar que los hombres
se extinguieron de la faz de la tierra
y desde sus tumbas todo lo que podían ver
(sus cadáveres, sus espíritus, sus esqueletos,
sus ojos llenos  de cenizas, sus residuos)
todo lo que podían ver era:
piedras y más piedras, azufre,
escombros, ríos y lagos secos;
océanos secos y una tortuga de barro
caminando con su hijo.

Orion’s Orchard

[Poetic Prose]

In the universe, the one that surrounds the world (perhaps the mind as well)—someone once threw a ball into dark matter and dark energy after he created gravity—I do believe—threw a ball, somewhere, and it exploded—and it caused a Big Bang, somewhat in that unseen form of matter that pulls the universe, thus creating the great expansion, that has gone on since who knows when: which slowed everything down a bit, and its thrust (its push, threw everything in all directions) which is still keeping it airborne: carried by the shove that was set in motion (so very long ago—perhaps some fifteen-billion years ago); hence, when it loses its momentum, it will crash, I do suppose, and all that is, will be the ball (its substance: what is hanging onto it, in it): that is all that will be left, everything else just: waves, just waves in nothingness: waves that were made by that One person who forced out,  as a result, nothingness and all that it created will came to some kind of a standstill (I repeat)—it has to: for what will carry it—when all the engines that run the universe weaken, and the nuclear force and the electromagnetism collapse? When the protons and neutrons no longer come together in the nucleus of an atom, and no longer do the great galaxies spin fast enough and fly apart. Save that, that someone (I call God) does not create something else out of some kind of a new nothing. It’s how it was, how it had to be, how else could it have been: all this nothingness come about to surround the world, with all its “t’s” crossed, and its “I’s” dotted, with its universal gravitational balance. We normally don’t think this way, lest we want our minds to become mad.
       I heard a voice in this dream I had within my mind, it said: “I am immortal, I sit behind the suns, and I write epitaphs of all, all the living things, then I open up their lips, an endless task it seems at times: the zenith of life comes from nothingness—and I, I alone hear their dying wish: to remain, to be: to some extent, be like me forevermore. Eyeless faces, pale and un-molded, that is what you all were once, but by My graces so you all became something more than nothing.
       “Orion’s illumed by My side, showers Me like a rainbow with its gasses, breathless orchard: it is the magnificent mocker of the universe: perhaps you would call it such, perchance: Baudelaire’s fantasy; or Poe’s Twilight; or Clark Ashton Smith’s perilous deep orchards; George Sterling’s musical images, ghostly lights; Dr. Dennis L. Siluk’s murmur, bemused silence; Philip Ellis’ epigrammatic flight of the imagination. Amir Or’s Israel, or perhaps even Robin Jeffers’ “The Great Explosion.”  Hence, I touch, only touch (lest I destroy My own makings): only touch beyond its burning drums, into the winds of nothingness—what I created it all out of. The horse-head: it roars like a volcano, a moat around Me; the Universe is like a squeezing viper at times, a sacrificial rip in all the proportions I’ve carved out of the thrust, as you call it—or have called it, from the push: I fixed it for you: the watchers from earth.
       “You see and you don’t see I created two different things (well, perhaps more but you won’t understand that), different states of the same thing, and when you study this more, you will understand, why your existence is possible. For without mass, the universe would not be the way it is, nor would you be the way you are. And there’s no way for you to understand me, when you can’t even figure out the glue I used, to glue it all together.”

#1366 6/5/2006; written while at the El Parquetito Café in Miraflores, Lima, Peru, one afternoon (reedited, 7-2012)

The Plane from Iquitos [Iquitos, Peru- 1959]

Evil-eye, Chief of the Amazon Tribe

It was December 2, 1959, I was sitting on a small prop-plane leaving Iquitos, Peru for a trip flying down and above the Amazon, towards the opening of the mouth of the potent river—, heading for Manaus. 
       As we flew low one could see the waters of the Amazon, its width and the small villages along the way, it always impressed me, but more so from this birds-eye view the Amazon and its snake like windings, and squid like form, with all its tentacles—its tributaries, it all was so enormous.  It would get smaller, and then wider as you flew along its stretched out body, it was four miles wide at one point, and that was nothing compared to other spots of the Amazon. 
       If not water, the Amazon was all jungle, even by the banks of the river, and the tops of the trees, it all looked like a sea of green, towering green, one-hundred and fifteen to one-hundred and thirty-feet high. 
       Pink-Dolphins jumping through the water’s as if they were in a playground; birds parched on high branches sleeping: little monkeys jumping from branch to branch.
       I had heard the Amazon could produce as much water flow as any seven rivers in the world combined; that it was the longest river in the world, seemingly always a debate between the Nile.

       As we continued to fly low down the river about one-hundred and twenty-five miles to the east we started to go inland some. The view was tremendous, the height of the trees, continued to amaze me.  With my binoculars I could see what the co-pilot called The Big Lazy Birds sleeping in the trees; we were less than one-hundred feet over the tops of the trees, and some of the monkeys were going crazy.  Then all of a sudden I heard a shot, it hit the wing of the plane, and then another shot. 
       The copilot, Henry Trakl, ran back towards where I was sitting, looked out my window didn’t see anything unusual, then Captain Derry, came, “We’ve been hit by something, we’re losing fuel, not sure exactly where we can land but I’ll see—try I mean…” then he went back to his cockpit where the copilot was.  All eight of us now were looking out the windows.
       There was Dana and Kim, from Hong Kong, both spoke good English, and then there was Lora from someplace in Florida, she was an accountant, a single on this trip, leaving her boyfriend, back in Florida, evidently less enthusiastic.  Then there was the man from Budapest of all places a professor of some kind, I just called him Professor, he also was alone.  Then there was the three women from someplace in the South West of the United States, they were on a world tour of sorts, and had left Barrow, Alaska to join us.  Martha, the elder of the three women, seeming in their early sixties wee most chatty, and talked about their last rip, in particular, Martha walking five-hundred feet out onto the ice of the Chukchi Sea.

       And now the plane started to lower itself even more so, the captain had seen an opening along with several huts; one big hut was right under them.  The pilot circled the area, the engines were both choking, the propellers were grunting in spurts.  By the large hut, in what looked like the center of the village—a courtyard of sorts—so the pilot felt it was the only accommodating spot for a crash landing. 

Somehow the captain had landed the plane, but the front end of the plane went headfirst into one of the several huts, both wheels broke off, a wing was bent, the torso of the plane was damaged, and there was no way would we be able to use this courtyard as a runway to escape, if even we could find a way to repair the plane.  We were all grounded.
        As we all quickly stepped out of the plane, the village looked deserted; not one fleshly body in sight. We all seemingly started going our own ways—every-which-way, kind of walking in a daze, a dizzy state of shock, we found ourselves in two groups of five. The Captain’s group was headed towards the big wooden hut   to see if he could talk to any of the tribe’s people.  I was walking with the other five towards the smaller huts. 
       As we went from one hut to the next, it come into view, the families were nuclear families, large families, much bedding was displayed about—mats to sleep on for the most part. Now inside one of the huts, on a table we five noticed—the three women from Barrow, and the professor—noticed, cameras of all kinds, watches, rings, jewelry. It was as if these items were prizes, or for that matter, trophies of sorts; collectables.
       Then after a moment’s deliberation, I got thinking we needed to catch up with the Captain’s group, supposedly in the big hutch. 
       Once in the big hutch, I noticed a basement of some kind, let’s call it a dugout in lack of a better word and I noticed the others were down in it—the captain’s group.  It was much cooler there, so it looked than the upper section where I was. 
     “Troy,” yelled the Captain, “It looks like these inhabitants are not friendly creatures.”  Three hours had gone by for him to have figured that out I thought.        He added, “Let’s take our jewelry off and leave it down here so when they come they will realize we are friendly.”  Everyone looked at him, and then started taking it off, everyone but me that is.
       “Troy!” yelled the Captain again, “Are you going along with this or what?”
       “No, sorry Captain, but you’re not in charge anymore.” 
       Being an old soldier, I figured I’d stay alive longer, by following my instincts, my old unpolished skills, more so than his flying skills, which we didn’t need on any longer. 
    “Listen,” I told the captain, “I am not going to leave them anything for a trophy, and I do not see any live people looking like me walking around; in other words no welcoming party.  Matter of fact, I see a hole in the wing of the plane, that was perhaps a rifle used by one of the natives from this here village to shoot us down. 
       “Second, I wouldn’t doubt if they were looking for us this very minute to desecrate our bodies, and burn the plane to smithereens, so no tales can be told.
       “Third, I suggest we go west one-hundred and fifty miles, back to Iquitos.  It should take fifteen-days walking, at perhaps ten-miles per day in the jungle.  We should also burn this village so to let them know we are not going to be easy pickings, plus they will need to re-supply, and this will damage some of that.  And we may need our jewelry to keep us alive, if we find some nice natives in this beastly jungle who like bartering.”
        I wasn’t real sure if we should burn the village, but I said it, and I thought it was the wise thing to do, because  once they seen we were not in the plane they’d come looking for us: hence, it might give us a running start.
       “It sounds better than my plan I have to admit.” Said the Captain, “And so, where do we go from here?” he asked.
       I had thought we needed to go in two groups, if one didn’t make it out of the jungle to safety, possibly the other group would.  And although I didn’t say it, I felt the natives would seek out one of two groups—perhaps thinking it was the only one, and killing all within that group. This would allow the other group to escape without chase.
       We put torches to the village huts and the plane, grabbed some meat that was hanging poles and vines. I had grabbed a gun from the plane already, the Captain said he never shot one, so he’d have no use for it. It had six bullets in its revolving chambers; it was worth its weight in gold to me.  Then with some skins tied to our backs to use as bedding, and a few filled water we found in the huts we headed west.

The five that were with me seemed to want to stay with me, and so we, the Captain and I, both had our teams figured out.  And so into the wild we went, trekking  the deep rooted jungle with all its extending roots, hanging leafage, and untiring creatures that crossed our paths. 
       Fatigued with sore feet, that was the readout among most of us the first six hours of on foot flight through the jungle: trying to get to a  location, possible find a boat somehow near the banks of the Amazon, to help us on our trip back to Iquitos. I told myself anything was possible, and you had to have a plan for the group, and we could modify it along the way. But we were quite a distance from banks of the river at present.
       I had already broken a toenail to my big right toe as I had fallen several times on extending roots. Water was getting into my boots didn’t help either, yet I dare not take them off, too many stones, roots, and those big hairy looking red tarantulas. By and large, they came out of their holes under the tree roots to see what all the commotion was about, and hid back under them, paying us little to no attention, once seen.

         After a while longer, I had taken my shoes off to massage my feet, and walked barefoot over the mucky and slimy jungle patches of leafage and vegetation; jumping over old moss ridden trees laying in our way; some of the trees were so huge I looked like a grasshopper standing next to them.  And everywhere were ants of different design—red, black, many carrying leaf home, five times their size; some so large, they had a hard time balancing them on their backs.  Some ants were huge, others small, all seemingly in a marching mode—stretching deep into the jungle to who knows were. And there was quite an assortment of butterflies, some with eyes in their wings.
       The Professor fell and broke his nose trying to climb an embankment, over roots, roots and more roots.  The three older women were agonizingly tired, and so we stopped to make camp, and I tried to make a fire but everything seemed damp, too damp for the moment.  After an hour I did succeed.
       It was about 10:00 p.m., when I heard some sounds in the nearby density of the jungle. I grabbed a burning stick, my revolver in one hand the fiery stick in the other, thinking animals were a bit more cautious with a flaming piece of fire in front of their noses. And then he appeared, a native, he stood at the edge of an opening to our camp, with a striking creative smile, he then came walking into our camp, I lowered my revolver,  “No want trouble,” he mumbled. He was almost completely naked. 
       After some curtsies were given between him and us, He had explained to us, he had seen a few white people before, learned several words, like: trouble, no, yes, want, eat, hurt, kill, but that was the extent of it. Through his expressions, body language, and those few words, I had figured out, he had heard about us, through some other natives; that we had burnt their village down, and they were looking to kill us all, but he was of another village. He also expressed, that we were very brave to have done that.
       He took us back to his village, it was less than an hour’s walk, and he gave me some ointment for my big toe, and reset the Professors nose somehow. We were for the most part, strange heroes to them.  The women were given hammocks to rest.  And as I looked about the five huts that the village consisted of, I noticed on top of a tree there was a man looking about, a sentry that is, as if in a canopy that circled his whole village. 
    “Man…is guard,” he tried to explain to me. Evidently one needed, in case those from a nearby village might one day decide to exterminate them, the village being the very one we put fire to.

Mana was our new and very kind host’s name. We expected to stay with him,  within his village no longer than two days and be on our way, lest we stay longer and cause him trouble with the village folk we had put aflame to. So he would not get in trouble we would leave, that was our premise, our plan, but he personally extended it, the reason being, his tribe of no more than twenty, took a profound interest in us.  As it was, they had a great celebration for us, and cooked a boar, and fish and even allowed the guards who guarded the village from the canopy, to get involved with the celebration, its festivities; the guard I got to know was named Kana. 

It was morning on the fifth day, I felt we had stayed too long, yet it seemed Mana didn’t want to let us go.  The three older women got along well with helping the youth of the village, and the Professor was as happy as a baby duck just walking around trying to learn their language and customs.  I was more into the adventure part I suppose, and took a few walks with Mana here and there outside of the village, and the night before, we had sought out a  tributary that lead back into  the Amazon waters, while looking for anacondas, but didn’t find any. None the less, we found dugout boat, and I figured that would do, have to do.
        Mana was going to point the way for us this morning back to the Amazon River, that tributary we had found where the dugout boat was.  Actually he drew a map late last night, and we expected to be on our way as soon as sunrise.
       As we all gathered into the center of the village, Mana looked up in the canopy, that stretched from tree to tree around the village,  at the spot Kana was suppose to be guarding, and he wasn’t there.  He then looked at me again, he looked a little ill, and then looked about, into other areas of the high trees, and some reaching higher than a fifteen storey building, but Kana was nowhere to be found. Mana looked at me again; even more ill-fated than before, as if an instinctive, death mask had been crushed into his face and skull. 
        “Hush,” he said to us all, we were the only ones making noise in the jungle, all the birds in the trees had left—and that was a sign of danger.
       Mana’s eyes showed bereavement, and then it hit me, we were the group that would not make it out of the jungle, the 50-50 proposition, I had forecasted: I should have listened to my intuition and left.
       And at that thought, at that very moment, before I could let the carbon out of my lungs, and take in fresh oxygen, a spear went through Mana’s back, piercing his heart, coming out the other side.  He dropped to his knees, then several more spears came, like lightning rods out of nowhere, all hitting the men first, after that the women and kids.  I shot wildly two rounds out of my gun, then three more into the gray darkness of the penetrating jungle, blindly shot, and hit three natives with five bullets, they fell forward out of the leafage.
       No one had a chance to get to a weapon, and no one else could see where the enemy was. I reloaded my pistol, and simply sprayed the area with bullets, where the spears were coming out of.  Out of the six shots, I got three more of the enemy.  And I stood there, just stood there with bodies all around, one bullet in my pocket left, but I dare not try for it I told myself, if I did, I’d not see the spears coming, and so I looked dreadfully about; inch by inch covering a circle around the village—I had learned to look in a three dimensional way, because life is three dimensional, so I looked up, out, and down. 
       I saw from a distance a tall, very tall lean man, with a painted face. He didn’t come close to me, he kept his distance, possibly for two reasons I thought, one: I had the gun, and he didn’t know how many bullets it had, which was none for the moment; and two, he wanted to show me what my  presence created, possibly the disruption of what he considered harmony. The professor and the three women were dead, Mana was now dead,  Kana also,  I really didn’t know who was left alive and to my observation all the twenty or so tribe’s people were either dead, or fled, I couldn’t say for sure.  But there was no way for me to escape, I was in the center of it, it was proving to be a hell of a day.
    The painted man gave me a bow of bravery, and a smirk of contempt, and then walked away, as did everyone else.  And then a spear came towards me, from the tree above, not all that far away—I  thought about the bullet in my pocket, but that was my last thought, I knew I was dead—I wanted him to turn around but he didn’t, he was showing me  I was insignificant—and ……….dead, but I wasn’t dead, was I?

Written March, 2003 (in St. Paul, Minnesota) originally published in the short story book:  “Dracula’s Ghost” © 2003; reedited for publication in a new book, October, 2012.  Drawing of the Chief Evil-eye, by the author, in 2003    (about 800-words have been cut from the original story). Part one of three.

Note: in 2000 A.D., the author took a trip by boat down the Amazon, of Peru, starting from Iquitos, 125-miles, then into the jungle on foot, and to a lodge, there he stayed for five days, as he visited areas, along with one village, where he talked to the chief medicine man. He also went anaconda and tarantula searching at night;  saw the landscape, as described in the story “The Plane from Iquitos,” ; saw: ants, monkeys and strange looking butterfly’s; and walked around a  scientific canopy built some years prior that overlooked the  jungle area, and its top he calls the Green Sea, some 120-feet high. Thus, that is where this story comes from, although of course he has fictionalized much of it.