Friday, February 19, 2016

Algo, a piece by.

I recently stumbled upon a short written by Algo, that infamous writer, whom I first wrote about here. This one was surprisingly found in a middle-brow magazine. You know,  one with all the affectations of the upper middle class (without much substance, usually). Though I'm surprised to find the author in such pages, I suppose I should have seen it. That author's latest forays into more experimental fiction has lost him many friends. That being said, I look to this as a regression and I would dare say one out side of the author's strengths. [1] With express permission, I include it below. I think you too will be surprised by what you read.

 A day like any other—the sun filtering at angles low, that meek light only caressing one's skin, like old age creeping into an overused joint, like the tepid kiss of a lover no more, like the sting of  nameless deaths across the ocean—Jan walked into the lukewarm air. The leaves on the trees twinkle towards the heavens, then like some great awakening all start to flutter skyward. And no matter how much the gods up there had or would punish them, those leaves kept looking skyward, for not logic pushed them that way but wholly unrelated forces that cared not for which way they turned.

Jan noted this and pulled her light jacket tighter around her body and waited for the deluge, smiling at how others were taking cover. Fat drops of water filled the air. Then slap, slap-slap the sidewalk glistened wet. A flash: rolling thunder punched through the soundscape of horns and murmurs.

The skies opened up and rained a river, and not some navigable European river. No. This was a twisting, turning class 4 river with a vicious undercurrent and enough foam to cover the awnings of stores, the current sweeping some hapless pedestrians . 

Jan ran, almost fell from the flow of water, then walked, all stutter-step feet close to ground, to the cafe and burst through a small group of refugees who stared at her, then looked back out to their homeland of sidewalks and endless window shopping, their eyes vacant, yet lusting, like stoned teenagers, or rather like battle-weary soldiers suddenly upon a set of relief soldiers, or like other soldiers, now back from war, unleashed upon a brothel with all its fruits of delight (the socioeconomic slave drivers of said fruits being something that we shall over look for now). 

Now Jan moved though the staring-at-the-deluge baristas and shop goers and asked for a coffee—what she had originally come out for. But there was no response. The people kept staring outside, for the rain was now an ocean, the windows cracking. Then sploosh. The water entered, ravenous, hungry, soldiers on a rampage and they all floated until in their lungs air was replaced with water.

[1] That in of itself could fill a book; the muses that drive an author one way or another. As it stands, it's not for me to judge. I do feel that this is his weakest work, even when compared to another piece of his which was heavily critiqued. (What then to make of an author who has created works of art and then fallen backwards? Assumes it's part of a larger arc they see and know and I don't? Even with Rushdie I feel the same way. I suppose it's a matter of not taking the text or the creator of the text as sacred, and treating it as a medium less so than something final)

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