HERESIARCH

A collection of other people's writing

I fell into a sickly sleep. All night long, nightmares and disagreeable dreams followed one another; they left me completely exhausted. I woke up sicker than ever. I recalled what I had just dreamed: on entering a large room, I found myself in front of a four-poster canopy bed - a kind of wheelless hearse. This bed, or hearse, was surrounded by a certain number of men and women; the same, apparently, as my companions of the previous evening. The vast room was no doubt a theater, and these men and women were actors or perhaps directors of a production so extraordinary that I was filled with anxiety as I waited…I myself was to one side, in the shelter of a kind of bare, dilapidated corridor: its relation to the room with the bed in it was like that of orchestra seats to the floor of a stage. The forthcoming entertainment was evidently upsetting and full of outrageous humor: we were expecting a real corpse to appear. At that point I noticed a coffin resting in the middle of the four-poster. The plank covering it disappeared, gliding back as noiselessly as a theatre curtain or the lid of a chess set; but what was revealed was not horrible. The corpse was an object of indefinable shape - pink wax of dazzling freshness. The wax recalled the blonde girl’s doll whose feet had been cut off. What could be more delectable? It suited the sardonic, quietly delighted attitude of those present. A cruel and agreeable joke had just been played on some victim as yet unknown. Soon afterward, the pink object, which was both disturbing and appealing, grew considerably larger; it took on the appearance of a gigantic corpse carved in marble, with veins of pink or of yellow ocher. The head of the corpse was a huge mare’s skull; its body was either a fishbone or an enormous jawbone that had lost half its teeth and been bent straight. The legs prolonged this spine the way a man’s do. They had no feet - they were the long, gnarled stumps of a horse’s legs. The sum of these parts was hilarious and monstrous and had the likeness of a Greek marble statue. The skull was topped by a soldier’s helmet, which was set on its peak like a straw bonnet on a horse’s head. Personally, I could no longer tell whether I was supposed to feel anxious or start laughing. It became clear that if I did start laughing, this corpse of sorts would be nothing but a sarcastic jest; whereas if I started trembling, it would rush at me and tear me to pieces. I lost track of everything. The recumbent corpse turned into a Minerva in gown and armor, erect and aggressive beneath her helmet. This Minerva was also made of marble, but she was running around like a crazy woman. In her violent way she was perpetuating the jest that had delighted me and nevertheless left me aghast. There was tremendous hilarity in the back of the room, except that no one was laughing. The Minerva started whirling a marble scimitar in the air. Everything about her was corpselike. The Moorish shape of her weapon referred to the place where things were happening: a “scimitary” of white marble, of livid marble. She was gigantic. There was no way of knowing if I was supposed to take her seriously. She became even more equivocal. For the time being, there was no question of her coming down from the room in which she was running around to the alley where I had fearfully taken refuge. I had now grown small. When she saw me, she realized that I was afraid. My fear attracted her. Her gestures became ludicrously wild. Suddenly she came down and started rushing at me, twirling her lugubrious weapon with ever wilder energy. Things were coming to a head. I was paralysed with horror.

I quickly grasped that, in this dream, Dirty (now both insane and dead) had assumed the garb and likeness of the Commendatore. In this unrecognizable guise, she was rushing at me in order to annihilate me.

Posted on October 1, 2008