Saturday, 5 March 2011

These words are not my own

These words are not my own, they only come when I'm alone. They cover surface after surface, anything that doesn't move or can't get away. I wake in the mornings and there are words everywhere, on the sheets, on the walls, on my skin where I can reach. Where I can't reach there are squiggles and blurs where I have made the attempt anyway.
The words make no sense, they're in no language that I recognise. I self-diagnosed glossolalia and took myself off to church for a week. I was asked to leave after the choir-boys discovered that their cassocks were covered in my words, and no god had spoken to me. I lit a candle in their darkness and left it at the altar having written in the wax first. I hope that some of my words made their way to heaven.
I slowed the words down a little when I stopped reading, as though they need raw material in the form of other words. For a few days when I woke the sheets would be only half-covered, the walls barely grafittied, and my skin would be blessedly free from ink. Then I woke one morning to find two furious librarians and two curious policemen sitting in my kitchen. They assured me that I'd sleep-walked to the library, eaten three books with a little mustard and salt, and then written on every blank end-page I could find. They even showed me my handwriting in the books.
Now I'm trying to find the right words to read, the ones that will produce something comprehensible from the words I write. I hope that if I can just understand what I'm trying to say, that might be enough to stop it. I spent last night reading Nostradamus in the original French to see if I might predict the future.
The paper on the table in front of me has neat lines of text on it, as it always does. The question is, of course, do the words make sense? I lean forward to read it.
These words are not my own, they only come when I'm alone.

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