ARTICLE 60: REPRESENTATION
If a person, if only for an hour at a time, could borrow the bodies of others,
I would borrow yours, my brother, so that you could walk beside a river somewhere.’
* Eva Runefelt
* PART IV - Policies and Action
One cat I got from an abandoned building site. His eye was glued shut, an ear
partly severed and in his fur you could still see the teeth marks of the dogs. He
lived under a cupboard for a week and didn’t sleep, each time I got on my knees
to look for him I’d find him crouching, with a glazed look, I could only tell he
was still alive from the sucking motion of his flanks, a frightened oxygen pump.
Later he would sometimes let you stroke him, if you were very careful he
wouldn’t bite. But one night he jumped onto the bed, a claw slashed into my
eyebrow, blood ran down my nose into my mouth, I dived under a pillow to
dodge the tiger in my house.
Another cat I found in the street, in a porch in the cold rain. She was so small
that she was still full of trust. The first night she already slept in my bed, fell into
such a deep sleep that all the life slid out of her young muscles, I played with her
paws, tail, she became a toy cat filled with sand. At night she didn’t hear
the neighbours’ dogs. That sleep is called: safety.
A friend who is deaf says: he’s got the sweetest tom cat in the world. One night
it jumps onto his head, his stomach, it viciously bites his toes. When he looks up,
bewildered, he sees how, in the dim light, the door handle of the bedroom moves
down, moves down without making any sound.
This is how cats talk to us: about the depths of sleep, the wild flesh of ancient fears.
We live in a time of transition, which our grandchildren
May designate an epoch. We know nothing about ourselves but they
Will classify us as butterflies in History’s specimen cases.
We will be gazing through the glass with our lifeless
Eyes, and our children’s children, the conquerors
Of stars, will be thumbing through family albums. This
Old fashioned elderly gentleman is me, the photograph
Already faded. I’m standing motionless, eyes fixed
On the setting sun. In the top left corner
You can see a shining dot. And that’s precisely why
This old photograph has such significance. That was
The first sign. Then came the others.
The good gardener prizes the shadow of the apple tree.