The Mud Is The Flower (excerpts)

The chief suspect now makes his entrance. The roof of the courtroom rolls open, a flock of twittering starlings flies inside and lands in the reeds of the public gallery. The court officers who should be guarding the suspect, instead follow him slavishly, projecting slide shows of his most celebrated nature sanctuaries upon the walls and the astonished faces of the spectators, pushing each other aside for the honor of carrying his reference books and his field equipment, rolling out topographic maps like red carpets before his feet... Four muscular officers hold up a medal as big as a megalith carved with the inscription "For Our Savior, From His Grateful Nature." He can't even carry it by himself, that's how huge his merit is. When the prisoner unexpectedly stops walking, the whole procession around him comes to a tumbling halt. He points to the birds in the reeds and announces ceremoniously: "Look, starlings." Naturalists with field-glasses dangling around their necks appear from all directions and drop to their knees in ecstasy. Complimenting mouths without a sound. All of the onlookers applaud. All except the judge.

"Father..." the judge calls out and he tastes the sound. The name reverberates through the judge's head and finds its way to the innermost layers of the earth, where everything that ever existed is forever preserved. It echoes through large halls and small rooms, stately mansions and peasants' huts, marshes and heathlands where biologists crawl around identifying species, the burrow of a family of badgers, the migration routes of birds that fly to the other side of the world leaving hat pins on Father's map on the wall... An airplane writes his name in smoke across the sky, his signature is engraved on a huge pedestal that stands upside-down upon the earth, upon nature, his life's work.

At home the wife crawls and the daughter yearns. Father is great and Mother is his prophet. God leads into temptation and gives nothing more. He is the hard hand that hits, he is the hungry hand that grabs. The crowd wants to come closer, wants to touch the hem of his charming trousers, wants to feel his hard hand... Hurt me, begs the crowd, then I'll know you love me. Heat me up until I burn, break my skin, break my blood, break my soul...

The judge lifts his robe. The full moon comes up and the stars all disappear. The daughter has a festering belly from the honey that has nowhere to go. She's pregnant with caged lust. I don't want any of this honey, feels the child, honey is bitter acid-green gall, honey is poison. My sweet is not for him. If he tastes me he'll devour me. And then I'll be inside him forever... He strikes with his hammer on the forbidden spot. I no longer breathe but I still burn. Everything except letting go now. Teeth in your throat. Your heart dries out in the burning sun. The hyena eats your living flesh.

"I have to harden her, she's much too sensitive. The world is hard as stone..." He strikes her hard in the face. All those present applaud, well done Father. Make her hard. You're hard as stone, Father. Make her as yourself, create her in your own image. She shall hate the honey and crush the bees. She shall happily sleep with murderers, she shall poison her own children and trample the flowers...

Beat me Father, beat me with your hands, beat with your breath, beat me with your whole body... Beat me there, deep down inside, in the place I have no name for...

"Father..." The judge lets the word sound... In the beginning was the word. Father... And the word became flesh. His freezing lust. A knife full of hate.

My knife is love, whispers her beloved. She turns up her nose and laughs. Stop lying. A knife takes and rips you open. Love... She pronounces the word sneeringly and strikes her beloved in the face. The world is hard as stone, she says, you're much too sensitive. All those present applaud, she's a good daughter, a true child of her father. Well done my girl, that's a good girl.

Let me use you one more time... I'm the only one who really feels anything, what others feel is never as bad or important as what I feel.

But my knife is really love... whispers her beloved. A tear falls on her skin and burns. Bores into her frozen cells and touches a longing, hidden deep inside. Her hard belly twitches and weeps. Stop lying. Stop making fun of me. She beats him with her fists. Go away. It's not true. It doesn't exist.

And still, my knife is love... he says once again. Take it. It's for you... Her eyes cloud up with hate. She kicks as hard as she can towards his knife. Clenches her teeth and growls. I am hard as stone. I am Father.

She is Father and she's standing trial. Father is in her. Love or kill? "Father..." the judge calls out and the sound finds a path through all her tissues. Where is he? He is the fist in her belly. He is the hardness in her jaws. He is the crust around her heart. He is the wrinkles and spots on her skin, he is hate and fear, he is death that makes her thoughts black and impenetrable, that makes her wander in cellars and caves, that makes her belly glow and her chest freeze.

"Father must die," the judge calls out. "Say it. Father must die." Her lips want to say it, but her voice hides deep inside her throat. Who am I without Father? What will remain of me once he's gone? I've been him for so long, it's a fortress. A somebody. A personality in me. Something to hold on to. Something visible to be. To fight against and to help me go on fighting. He protects me against the great void I feel inside where everything is soft and fluid. Which way will I go? What will I still be? Without him I can't exist. What else keeps me going? What will my thoughts be without him? Will I even have any thoughts left? I am Father thus I am.

I am Father thus I die his miserable lonesome death, whining with fear, begging for mercy, stinking of intestines. I crawl and beg before the eye of God after a life of abusing his name. I whimper for the Holy Virgin, but she does not appear to me. Faith found at the gates of hell is no faith. And the living virgin who once loved me above all else, looks at me now with hate and disgust, shakes her head and turns away.


There is no tombstone, no in memoriam, no mass grave, there are no remaining bones, there is nothing at all. The tyrant was killed with all might, finished off, wiped out, obliterated, and when that was done, the liberation laughed, there was no need to do it so forcefully, there was no need to even do it at all, not even kindly and gently... It was only a phantom, pictures in the mind, and not in any way reality. There are always more shadows obscuring the horizon with their lies. This was the past, but now there's still the future. Later on something will happen that... Makes everything fall into place. A meaning, an intention, something for which it all happened as it did. In the meantime something must be done. A discipline, a way of being, I need therapy and meditation and help and methods, a master, a clairvoyant, invisible entities, a cup of coffee... The merchandise of all the wholesalers in spiritual poison, the hope in which now is never right even though you must live in the now so that later on... Enlightenment shall come. The great universal orgasm. Oneness with the whole whatever. To die consciously. And then. A grave of longing. And then. No need to bring in the army. It's all nothing but ghosts.

All words and images copyright 2008 by Vanita & Johanna Monk

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