Having my way with Ulysses

You will see who

Thereupon the eagle changed into a piebald wolf and these two battled in the palace for a long time, when the cat, seeing himself overcome, changed into a worm and crept into a huge red pomegranate which lay beside the jetting fountain in the midst of the palace hall. Whereupon the pomegranate swelled to the size of a watermelon in air and, falling upon the marble pavement of the palace, broke to pieces, and all the grains fell out and were scattered about till they covered the whole floor. 11:36 am

My dream of the night before puzzles me.  Remember.  I am almosting it.  I was walking amongst my subjects in the street of harlots, disguised as a carpet merchant.  I found there amongst the tanyard smells a young man, quite lost, dressed in rancid rags illdyed black.  He looked near starvation so I offered him a melon, but he would not eat.  Instead, he delighted in its smell.  I led him to an open hallway and showed him the greatest treasure amongst my wares, a piece of tapestry that transports any who sit upon it in an instant to any person imaginable, without being stopped by any obstacle.  He asked who?  And I said you shall see.  But when we sat together on the red carpet it was as if in that instant of transformation I became not the dreamer but the dreamed.  I felt not myself.  I was not myself.  I had become my dark companion and what was left of me existed only as the name Haroun al Raschid within the memory of his dream, now my dream.  I sat on a beach watching an inrushing tide.  There were other people, but I could see only dimly, an Egyptian man and woman with hennaed faces, the woman’s hair trailing. There was a dog, dead with a creamfruit smell, and a live one too, lightly kicked by the Egyptian for a transgression I didn’t see.  I watched as well as I could, the dog sniffing a rock, then lifting a hind leg and pissing against it.  Then the dog repeated himself against an unsmelt rock.  I cannot be sure as something was terribly wrong with my vision, but I believe I saw the unhappy beast collapse into painful yelping and as his hind paws scattered the sand his forepaws stretched, altering itself into the paw of a leopard.  With a shake, screaming, the entire leopard sprung forth from the sand.  It was the offspring of a lion and a panther within whose womb, impatient with the delays of time, he had felt burdened by gestation.  He had torn and ripped until he was discharged forth into the world, his birth damaged and scarred his mother’s womb forevermore.  Horrible now, upon this beach, he roots and scrapes.  Scratching.  Stopping to listen.  Scratching.  His merciless bright eyes hungry, scraping the earth.  Salivating now, listening.  Scratching, then triumphant as a carrion vulture, revealing the carcass of his dead mother.

And on the heath behind winking stars a fox

But for her the race of the world would have trampled him underfoot.10:16 am

Look at the snail.  Lean neck, thick.  Ugly.  This is one of my students, Sargent.  He waited after class for a usual reason.  His weak eyes blind to the futility of his academic career.  He can copy but not create.  Still, somebody had loved him.  Had borne him in her womb; two souls in the same body like the Nestorian Jesus.  And she had borne him in her heart. This boneless snail, protected by amor matris from being trampled underfoot by the world.  Well, all in good time.  Still, she had loved his weak watery blood.  Is that what Cranley meant?  Is what she feels the most real thing in this stinking dunghill of a world?  What would we ever know about what she feels?  I see a white dove standing on a broken calculator.  Beautiful.  Horrible it is enlarging.  White feathers are turning to fur, changing color, darkening, bristling.  Brown.  A bear standing on its back legs regarding me, calculating his path.  He gives me sight, and he multiplies my bread and my beer.  Now he is falling forward and catching himself with his front legs and with an intent I fear to place he moves.  His haunches, his breath, he is closer now.  He runs.  He leaps over a protective female form my mother lying prostrate before the door.  She is like the skeleton of a twig burnt in the fire and he is closer.  I see his eyes even with mine, yellow now and the fur around them reddening.  He strikes.  He shrinks.  He is shrinking.  His largeness, his roundness melts into  points, his ears and nose.  I see him now small and slender.  Merciless.  I smell his thievery.  The door and walls are gone and he scrapes the earth and listens.  The stars wink.  Complicit.  At least they know why.  And he scrapes the earth.  I can hear him, I know what he is doing.  And I know what he has done.  Scrape.  Listen.