Fiction
Fiction

Hexagon

Blake Butler


 

 

Cone

 

White cone descended in sound blister

 

There were the people having skin removed: to make the hood over our last evening

 

Cone, White cone, colored destroyed, slipped between the wall air and the bodice of the sacrificial mothers making money from the rummage of their wombs: unto the Cone

 

Our homes turned on their sides, the sound of the descent fixed with the ripping split the image of our vision into ten and ten again, we watched the fluelight strobe from softer planets in the vision of the fly, our begging formed a prayer

 

The cue meat of our perfect flayed-red bodies had been for hours there arranged, stood up on gray dots in White silence for the Cone, we called it god, we called our bleating mothers’ named into the fold of needless seeing, this could have ended where it began, could have spared the retch of splitting selves, where the anger of the firmament released a golding dew

 

In the patterns of the people I could see the homes bumping through the frame of dirt rising magnetized to match the cone, the other color was a skin box inscribed with the numbers of our names, and someone begging inside the begging to be released from infinite fits, as this could yes go on forever and this would yes go on, numbers remained, sod remained fit to our cerebrums where we touched inside the fold, becoming only ever one mass body, the flubber of metal lungs and unending crystal squeal

 

Under the sever of the folds of each skin there were mirrors being turned up toward the gold, to fix the light back at itself and in beam of it the air began to mold white and formed with cones along the bristle, there were corridors there eaten into nothing, there were the blind becoming tongues, eaten hard into a coarse hold where no one wanted and the sandwiches were worm, the fire leading backwards into long globes where the holes would let you fall forever into dough, the cribbing of the muscles, the asking of the child, how to as well exit this father body before it hits the ground under the ground, and under that, the chew

 

Us our sandwiches for evenings and the columns of the replicating bell, a cord of child milk rising in pink glisten for the city lamp and making every person see themselves before themselves with tubes removed, the index of the body bopped with big sheaths of silver foiling, catching words where there were words, though there were very few, the colds came rolling, cinder burst in spume, chocolate winter, no condition, a bottle of the night, the words went on and on repeating and no hours, the crust eroding on the clocks, rams the size of Christmas folding webcode through the granule of the teeth, where anyone had been bitten for any year at all, I did not know what to say, I did not know what to say or could be needed, the hammer of the grunt, the pig babies falling out of holes surrounding, wired, what I needed was this bone

 

No, what I’d needed was not anything about a body, it was a small leak over the home, where all these animals were writhing and making little purple pockets from their sweat, by which hand over hand for hours one might climb into a blue mark that had corroded just across the gray, the mink of all the skies folded to one sky again quilted in the money of our night, a face just behind it, I heard seething, with its flabby lips and neon teeth, speaking into our white cylindrical air with all the language to be given back to Shell, back to the mime behind the moon’s boob squirting ugly milk all in this life, and still no one here would stop me from Become, no one could gather at my knees, the gnats having strengthened all such bulbs around us that the speaking even would not fit, and nothing left and wives dividing, and the money in my snatch, for every hour of the day a bed bloated stone-sized on the face of waters that had risen over all old glow, all the powerwires farting bloating pellets

 

There must be a limit to this wall, there must be someone growing larger just beneath the growing larger that could fuck the force back toward a stall, this was the idea we were healing under in a lexicon of domes, not a sound now even ever but something running back and forth between two nodes, and peeling upward anything that wanted near it, the mothers’ laughing rendered paste, the oars of something harder than a houseface leaning down toward the soil and blistering within it something reticulated and caterpillared and so croned it could not speak, the piddle of the image wavering from great heat and spittle rising off my back, my ingrate body, my pustule system, there was no one I would not have ever left, there were so many sore beds I had turned from or fell down through and would never blink again, would never eat again, would never, and I did this every day, for every hour I was alive I ratted someone out and so did Joey, John, Mary, Mom, so on, all the names, all the flux stops and the white ones, creaming underneath, the rise of corn where that bunch hit it and something warbling for bust, to be hit hard in the center of its wide, deciding, legendary face, the creams and rouge of Endlesswanting amassing on our arms a finer glue

 

And still I could not stand beside you in the color of the Cone, for each inch of me that wanted and would be cleaning there was ten feet of me that stunk, each rung of each of these connected more rungs in a cribbage system I could by no length of me infer, I did not have the body, no mind, nothing left on which to brand, suddenly I was wearing all these bracelets and these groancrowns and I was looking down upon the earth, the legions of pixel bodies screaming underneath me and raising with their hands, the curdlife in their eyes forming diagonals that split each into new earths, blood encrusted, cowing, bigger babies squirming in their tendons to get out of their whole heads and making war from underneath, bruises formed in trombone to regale me with acid squench, and yet, there at the same time, up above me, I was looking on into the butt of any other one, my arms raised in the same way up above my head and beeping with the babies also in my own folds there again, and the lather pouring from my bodice and the keyholes of my spine, and for every lick of shoulder I had there there were ten others with the same whorl, all of us looking up and onward into one, whereby, in the split, I was the godhead and the altar and the putty and the butt, I was no one for anybody and the whole air and the figurefather and the wretch, and all of this was fine still and all of this would soon I knew begin again

 

It did not begin again, I waited, I said the word, I fucked the cone, I let the cone fuck on hard into me, I waited, it did not begin again, I said the word again, I fucked the cone hard, I squirted come into a bull, something wriggled through my system eating all need and the need made meat in me again, and yet the hour went on lurking and still would not again begin again, I waited, I said the word, I let the cone have all my breast, I gave my cunt my comb my belly my cerebrum my disguise, no word, I gave my ass my hair my money gave the center of my light and all that coil, gave up the years I had recovered in my pillage and the white glue where I soon expected life again, gave all of that to that above me and at the same time rained it down, a spigot system of my spoiling rendered overhead and as clean soil, I waited more and fucked the cone more and fucked the cone’s friends and its clime, I rolled into and gave the numbers over I had been keeping for better night, to index in and sit with all these hours, I gave it this and this again, I let it eat its dinner in my tonsils, I let it sell me to the wench, gave my last religion to its mother and the white dog, could not stop coughing, wore the gown, split the crown in ten and ate that, shat it out, gave this to there, the Cone, the Whitened Cone, my king, it would not listen, it did not begin again, it had no eyes inside it even with my bent hard over and taking all this passion up the ass, all this spooling in me where once I had meant to be a seamstress and now was nothing more than stone

 

You could ask again, you could keep going, there were two dimensions and no walk, there were the seven dens split into heavens each and someone presiding over all, a glove eye at the center of Cone, it said its name and was the name forever and would spin down under dirt and eat the cord out of the dirt if this was wanted and would return and be a floor or be a cut orange on some white table seated around by many hooded men in masks, one of them a woman with a shaved head, though she would not be found, and burned on each one’s left nipple one new number that had been unindexed from the charts, a glass of milk in one hand, hammer other, how to remember how to begin, how to call the number in the phone that has been baking since the minute of the lock, where you were born a second child beside yourself into this white cone and the cone again, again, the mother of you bathing in the sludge you’d shit out of you inside a night, upon a bed called before another frame you’d meant to love and could not see, could not call by the right name in the light there with the screens descending every second made of ash, blistering the second soft between you and obliterating and descending every second there again, it did not matter that the sky had lurched down all this give already and within that some kind of sponge, a new shirt to put on and walk around in, cloud speech, this would not be yours, this would not be hours to have given back into you no matter which way inside the folding you would try, and in a warm flat room you laid down and were someone and in other ways you’d just begun, and in the same ways you’d been folded upright in a white cord for the hours colded in the floor, and in the same ways you were nothing left regardless and would never sin again, would never lick again or say a number or be a body of the Crash, the cone unspooling from its tip point ten ways and ten again and ten

 

What not yet above could not be crushed, this was the fifteenth iteration and would replicate again, though this still not be any new beginning and when it ended it would not end, the houses laced with blue night risen in the toning of the crystalmind, a corridor of small flags each pyramidal and seated with a center made of cream, each hiding where inside them another instance of this lock, the speaking humming through the speakerbodies magicked and lumped with lanterns down the longest corridors, the Cone’s, the Cone curled queuing flues of natural numbers with each one a little flay, guns pirouetting in the cinder, honey for a clasp, inside the bark I tried to stand up and look what fell out but all this paste I can not eat, this translucent shit of coming skin, or a person rendered from dismissal, what I gurgled, where you’ve been, the scorched recorder on the bedside table I would from my mind to mattress groan a blow, notes for nothing, no words, you feet beside my pillow squirting bread, somewhere down a long a long curve way beneath us a crying chowder we carried in our lungs throughout the maze, maze of ovens and frottage dying in the drawers surrounding hours we could not sleep, the hole the sink makes in a person, the diagrams of chalk, let me have you, again, no prismatics, let me have you of your brine, let me let the Cone inside us and fold nothing and be nothing and what worship of the rise, worms not threads but pleasure showers, the hole I have for you alone, the walls collapsing in the headnod faction where the mirrorarmies ask us to refrain from being flesh and spittle, I put my head against you in the shower, there is a number, a kind of dynasty undid, something writhing underneath the lather, your name imprinted, your chestparts affixed in the acid of the lawn we do not have, the asphalt prison of white hours walking between engines, someone halving you from inside that machine, the blue machine I almost killed by dying, the words you could not count, glass emission, night of no breech, caught your head against the blurt, and in the white the White Cone again rises, again the pearling rounding down, where I walk into the no yard where no door is and see the stone cut into the next instance in relief, another number will be coming and yet will not appear, speak me your age, add into the silent number that one and throw the system, guide


 

See Also: Blake Butler at The Center for Fiction

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Blake Butler

 

Questions for Blake Butler

 

Q. You take us right to the limits of our understanding, requiring us to learn how to read you. Can you tell us a little about your aesthetic decision-making? Where are you trying to push the reader?

 

A: I’m trying to push them into the hole behind their face, like I get pushed into the hole behind my face from eating too much or staring at the machine all hours or from thug rap. I’m trying to hurt America’s feelings in the no-feeling spot.

 

Q: Also in this issue are ten conceptual fictions by Richard Kostelanetz, who has been subverting traditional narrative forms since the 70s. In one sense, his approach is entirely different from yours: He’s stripped everything down to a single sentence. But he, too, is taking the reader’s expectations and smashing them to bits. Who do you feel you’ve been influenced by?

 

A: I would say I’ve been influenced by the hole behind my face and by my mother and by itchy skin and not being able to sit still and by a continuous flood of anger in me coming from nothing and aimed at nothing, so it is the weapon and the target at the same time. I was emotionally influenced by Jamal Mashburn when he played for Kentucky when I was fat but when he went to the NBA I stopped caring. On a similar page I have been influenced by mashed potatoes, the flood of cream paste that comes out of those brown orbs, and by the fact that I haven’t eaten the fat child style of mashed potatoes in so many years. It floods the hole.

 

Q:  Are there artists in other media who are especially important to you?

 

A: Whoever designs Michael Jordan’s shoes for Nike each year seems really important to me. I like Juicy J from Three Six and I like that video that Dutch artist Martijn Hendriks made where he deleted all the birds out of the video of Hitchcock’s The Birds. I like Steve Martin’s The Jerk, the way the sound in the bathroom he mistakes for his future apartment hits the walls there. Steve Martin’s nose and hair were important to me. Kenneth Anger. Also: McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets, though only the kind that come when you order two 20 piece boxes at once. Also: my dad’s brain, and the programmers of the PC computer game Might & Magic II. And whoever invented He Man. And Anton LaVey, though only his work on the pipe organ.

 

Blake Butler lives in Atlanta and edits HTMLGIANT. He is the author of There is No Year, Ever and Scorch Atlas

 

This story was originally published in Issue 2 of The Literarian.