UNDERGROUND VOICES: PURGING
GEORGE SPARLING

My Last Seven Words (based on emails)

Ivan Albright, Poor Room-


Computer goes on and off. Arthur Koestler's Ghost In the Machine----it's retribution time. It's hopeless. I'll never write online mainstream stories.

I revised the first version of Death and How It Got That Way and made it publishable. Doing it is always better than letting intestinal bile eat me alive ( there's a medical term for that ). I'm not going to get devoured by Kronos, ala Goya.

I'm thinking of a possible print-on-demand book. I summarized my fiction and figured I'd get at least one book out of it. Then a one-page outline. Never wanted to...big-time energy is involved: typing them to get uploaded to publisher. I should start a blog maybe, linking it to other blogs and litmags. Either do that or have a panic attack, like performers who vomit their hearts out before going onstage. My small apartment would be the Great Dismal Swamp. Reminds me of Ivan Albright's ( Art101 days ), painting, Poor Rooms---There is No Time, No Today, No Yesterday, No Tomorrow, Only the Forever.

Dies Irae is here. See you soon maybe.

An ex-"friend" e-mailed ( I deleted it ), again incriminating. This reply in itself is incriminating. I always over-react. And another "friend" phoned, speaking softly because of life-long depression, for little reason other than to see how I'm doing. He's bad news, less than me, perhaps. My evaluation of both myself and him rubs off on the negative side of the road. Very condemnatory and getting worse as more calls from past friends. He called at 2 am. He said it took about fifty rings. He asked about travel, do I ever leave, go to a distant place. No money for that.

The "friend" made certain to name-drop a hustler-Nazi guy, now gone collegiate when he couldn't make a living that way. Either that, or the guy worked psychops, dragging political-less ones into his maelstrom, syphoning off those who'd otherwise be lefties. Guilty all my life, paranoid for fifty years. Worse and worse.

I've noticed many times lots of articles, programs I've heard and seen, that in strange ways place me on the gallows. When I was in Paris doing the "Grand Tour," I could've tracked down an antique guillotine and paid someone to lop off my head. Ancient Roman, Tarquin, 2,000 years ago, said that when any person got out of control, he lopped their heads off like slicing opium poppies.

Technically, it's feasible for sophisticated torture ( CIA uses sensory deprivation ), though that puts me in the high stratosphere of paranoid schizophrenia. Pulling out waterboarding is gauche apparently.

I'm an electronic billboard broadcasting from the nearest planet in universe. Nothing is exculpatory, everything's inevitable and indelible as a tattoo. I just read that a good historian can make everything appear inevitable in what's called "history."

I get synchronistic emails regularly. Today I got an email from a magazine in which I'd three previously published stories. The editor said the one which had been completely rejected by all other mags, would be soon published. I figured the story very poorly written. Of course, generalized suspicion overwhelmed me. You say I should be glad I'm published. I am, but anyone with a laptop gets published. The days of a single author, great or not or lousy, are finished. Maybe a book will be written on foreheads as words scroll above eyes. Whichever topic I read very often matches the latest incoming mail. Sequencing, one thing following another, has become a dominating force in my so-called life. Since you're the only one I e-mail now, the others fallen along busted railroad tracks, I've no one to tell that I'm merely paranoid. I don't want advice, this is just an observation.

I believe my computer's tracked, plus sabotaged. A noisy whining today in hard drive. Who's the Guiding Light ( old soap )? It gets down to this: Have you been briefed?

No point in copyrighting emails. It's what "progressives" call the "commons."

I saw Character on DVD. The novel had no violence as I remembered. Karackter had been turned into a thriller. Phillip told me to read it after I said to him they're no more "business" novels. He reminded me of American Pastoral. The Dutch director Americanized it. That helped win Best Foreign Film Oscar, I guess.

I've been watching B-movies ( film noir ). Last one was ultra-corny, for nostalgia only.

The visit: I remember it well. You'd be very wrong on two major points, but it won't change your mind. Relations, both here and abroad, wouldn't change their minds either. This isn't cryptic, but glaring and obvious. Your explanations were ludicrous. I'd have to diagram a sentence, as in boring days, for it to sink in.

These emails are like Joyce's Finnegans Wake, Joyce confounding critics who searched for meaning and symbols, finding so many that negate each other, never understanding FW, Joyce getting last laugh. I can't laugh at anything.

I'll have more to say on my mental outlook ( better known as Project GLS---without quotation marks. ) How everyday words used millions of times during each rotating earth-spin bolster public opinion ( no " " ' s ) against me. The words are always in a specific context making me more blameworthy each day. It's laughable that I even write this email. I listen to hours of music daily, hearing one lyric go, "He thinks he's radical, but he's only fanatical." THAT, too, creates greater damage and I've no fail-safe protection from it. Very suggestable and guilt-ridden (guilt-riddance should predominate ), I am.

This is beginning to read like Samuel Pepys diary, written in cipher, to protect him during the rise of parliament and decline of royalty. He was Catholic. Oliver Cromwell's team weren't. Whatever is furthest from "Catholic," that's where you'll find me. But I'd like the confessional. We e-mail our confessions.

I think Gijs or you told me about Rick Moody. I'm now on Zyprexa after too long self-medicating. Hardly anymore wobbly walking ( ataxia ) now. Maybe I'll supplement sudoku into my life.

I have Eggers's memoir but haven't read it. Judith Guest's novel, Ordinary People, was set in Highland Park, not far from Egger's Lake Forest hometown. That's as close I've gotten to his books so far, linking Guest's novel and his novels.

They're voices in my head and I can't stop them. Pills don't help. It's here all right, the hell-to-pay season. Yeah, maybe I should've been a Catholic. Perhaps their faith encourages writing in code.

They're manipulating my dreams, the scumbags, waking me after two or three hours of sleep. If I told my doctor that, I'd end up eventually in a mental hospital ( they're making a comeback ). Don't call him since overseas emails get tracked also.

This is well past believable thought. Rational thought basically shitkicked out of fashion--- Post-Modern Age. I wouldn't qualify for independent living if this leaked out to ANY in medical profession. I won't go into details, but all my sotto voce is true...Damn the consequences...It's like the first battle of Bull Run, thousands of spectators watching an expected Union Army victory...But Southerners won and war dragged on four years.

Fuck 'em all, as Dan Rather said to his staff.

Even an old classmate emailed from BHS site. I thought of Steve, then get "Hi" sign from a common friend. They've ( there's a ‘there’ there all right ) set out to destroy me ( I realize these emails are self-serving---"self-serving," itself, is self-serving. ) Maybe I could write a story with quotation marks around each word. Publishable if for novelty only. Maybe grandiose thought after this caffeine high.

I do little concentration these days. The reactive mind kills. Wi-fi-ing ( verbing wi-fi ) must've been approved at high levels. Secret rooms in Pentagon? Bunker in redwood forests?

It would be nice talking pleasantries, as opposed to Who's Afraid of Virgnia Wolfe? Mother did it, you have the same capacity. I think I should've been more like the two screamers from the play/movie.

Yeah, some shit-eating bad shit. I should do more howls of execration rather than dwell upon excretion's trinity: pissing, shitting, orgasism. I have as great a loathing for the world as Camus's famous Stranger. Better hostility than docility...I'm developing clang effect, plus punning: schzie word play.

Tomorrow the housing inspector makes yearly visit. Those seven words could be as contagious and powerful, redounding through the ages as Jesus' final seven words. An outside force, a higher and therefore corrupting power, had commanded me to write those seven words. I'll be sent into rendition somewhere, anywhere but here. The Pope has banned Limbo, and Hell is too good for me. But probably my paranoia wouldn't fit into their puny Hell, I fear.


George Sparling has been published in many literary magazines including Tears in the Fence, Lynx Eye, Pittsburgh Quarterly, Red Rock Review, Hunger, Paumanok Review, Word Riot, Rattle, Pindeldyboz, nthposition, Snake Nation Review, Thieves Jargon, and Prose Toad. He has a short story in the winter, 2004 issue of Slow Trains and one in the January, 2005 issue of Laura Hird’s Showcase.

He has had many jobs including a welfare caseworker in East Harlem, a lumberyard laborer, a placer gold miner in the northern wilderness of California, a bookstore clerk, a postal mail carrier, a crab butcher on the early morning killing docks (those were the days of big hangovers), and a salmon processor (I flung fish around all day ).

He has a degree in English from Iowa Wesleyan College, is now in early retirement and is writing short stories as well as working on a memoir about his relationship to his father, focusing on the years after leaving home. He tries through prose to give all dark things the light they require to exist unconditionally.







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