I’m lying in bed and my wife is stabbing me in the forehead. My skull is hard and bony so she uses a rigid dagger and a mallet to chisel it through. This is a peculiar way to die but I am coming to grips with it. I figure it’s good to accept and come to grips with things, so I am focusing and channeling my energy.
I yelled at first but now I am into steps three and four, repression and denial. I don’t think I’ll make it to overt anguish, I hope not anyhow.
Drawing Room, Sunday
Find me in the drawing room
At the Majestic Hotel
Hot toddy made with
The second-finest single malt
Curl smoke from roughest Beedies
Rather than clumsy cigars
Red velvet belted robe
Replaces the glen plaid
Hung behind the hardwood high back
The barman named Sunday
I tell him the day i was born
6:45AM if i recall Mother’s story
However unnecessarily, continue to explain,
I’m not sure exactly
Of the time in Kuala Lumpur or
Kinchasa where his family waits for
Remittance he exchanges as salve for
Pain of separation and expectation
And aching tolerance of the unroyal man
Who explains old culture and
Stumbling billiards to all within
Without hint of invitation, irony
Or a scrap gentle restraint
++ Continued Exploits and Dispatches from one Thor Aronson ++
Over a week now in Istanbul, just waiting for evidence his quarry was here, or had stopped through at least. But, not a lead until a well-bribed cleaner a 4 floor walk up hotel sent word (through contacts at the Bosphorous port) of a passport matching his vague description. “A Canadian?” thought Thor, “they’re not even their own damn country! Just another dominion of the damn British!”
A closer look revealed his Greek heritage which indicated he had at least one passport to travel under. The stamp s showed a circuratous route through various Mediterranean, Levant and Baltic enclaves. Yet “Gus” is no TE Lawrence or even Wilfred Thesinger, no way he could be rambling through these remote places without assistance from a fluent Arabic speaker, various fixers and sea captains. But still, Thor was at least a step behind… if not more.
With the myriad ships going in and out of the gateway to Europe and Asia, he could be just about anywhere, but most definitely he was at sea as the rail lines were still rebuilding from frequent bombings, likely effectuated by those nefarious Brits.
No matter, after contacting an inside source at the Canadian Consulate (of course sequestered down a hallway at the UK embassy) Thor new, the passport was a fake and even the name might not be accurate, but… The face was definitely the mug he was after.
Thor sat down stone steps between the grand souk and the blue mosque, lit a cigar and waited for another smoke signal. If he was careless to leave the passport behind in the hotel safe, no doubt something else would emerge. The bribes were paid, the photo circulated and soon Gus would tip another card. Inhaling deeply, Thor mattered, “fucking Canadians, when will they get it together and become their own country?”