Friday, November 1, 2013

sliced any way

le Jardin, 1962, by Max Ernst

Hell, let me tell you what Pepe Lococo had to endure. First - meet the 'doctors'. Dr. Bela, a man of fifty, cement-colored skin, black eyes, licks his lips whenever the mention of blood rises to the top. Loves the site of blood when he brushes his teeth. Hard-bristled man. Then there's Dr. Boris - Tall, glassy pale eyes, bent over in the middle, broken cement-colored complexion, heavy white eyebrows. His tongue is twice the size of yours, so he sounds elegant as he chooses his words patiently.

Pepe passes through the downhill village of Le Jardin on foot. A woman scurries at the sight of him, spilling fresh water collected all day in a slow drip in a bucket stolen from a neighbor's downspout. Pepe - Twenty and five, with leather skin, pockmarked. Shutters slam shut as he approaches, and dogs howl. Today he's going to learn how to dissect.

Dr. Bela slams the fly swatter on the polished metal lab table. Twice.
"Must you do that so hard"?
"He was in the proximity of my crested turkey on rye".

Pepe turns at the last bungalow, strides the cart path up to the laboratory. A dog bites him in the heel and he is bleeding. He takes his small pencil out of his overcoat and makes a note of it, including a sketch of the animal. Unaware, paying attention to the detailed sketch of the alert ears, a cart scurrying past hits him head-on, killing the intern instantly.

Dr. Bela slaps Dr. Boris square on the forehead with the flyswatter.
"I am sorry". Dr. Boris shrugs his shoulders, calmly walks over to the sandwich and flings it across the floor with a surgical hook. The plate slides under a book shelf. He walks back over to Dr. Bela, lips parted, ready to accept reciprocation. Dr Bela smiles, and after a moment speaks slowly, eying the slabbed outline under the white sheet.

"Perhaps, we should begin".
"Pepe is late. You have time to eat. Although, my friend, your sandwich may be hard to reach".
Dr. Bela is no longer smiling. And then he is grinning before you know it, like a switch has been flipped, or a lever(pronounced by both men: 'leave her') is in the up/on position.
Dr. Bela flings the white sheet back and is horrified and disappointed to find no cadaver, but a model made of sponge-foam. He glares at Dr. Boris as though he stole a kiss from his daughter, thirty years younger.
"It will have to do", Dr. Boris explains, in an extended monologue lamenting the difficulty of procuring a live human cadaver in this day and age. He particular relishes repeating those three words: live human cadaver.
"Yes, I suppose. As long as we can show Pepe how to do a centralized incision".
"Lateral, you fool!"
"I'm no fool!"
Dr Boris painfully lowers himself, stooping, stooping, blindly reaching for the sandwich, searching. He rises out of breath, places the dusty sandwich before his adversary and performs the most expert lateral incision in dim incandescent light wielding his shiny prized bone chisel.


Blogger Tess Kincaid said...

Delightful Halloween tale...I laughed out loud at the flyswatter...

11/02/2013 11:42 AM  

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