Arachnid Selfportrait /5 — Louis Armand

I give my mind up as the occasion demands — like shitting through a chastity belt — in capitalism alone shame ceases to exist & BECOMES VIRAL PROPERTY — metabolism first from ape DNA to Venus flytrap — the buzzing behind an atrocity of mascara telling that every maxim is evidence of rejection — did G.O.D. go out into the garden with a rope coz jilted by humxnity? — a piece of rotten fruit dangling in the life tree — perish the thought! — these were the hellish etymologies devout lips refused to pass — like every subordinate the omission is partial [absence follows a stage direction] — & just as logos splits apart to reveal an inner shell so the Arachnoid’s smile was bleached kilometres of coral reef upon which hungry urchins fix their teeth — a child=mind’s horrodities the only honest repast — pomme de mère — grabbing it w/ both hands — dexterity is a rite of passage — as readily as casting the stones — a river gushing forth — in such manner do they digest quantities of luminous algae whose entropy provides subsistance for years at a time — fadeout to photosynthetic flesh=cells riding into Martian desert sunsets — the camera’s seeing=point in the dead centre of an absurd eye that can’t even say what the hell it’s doing there — in the blackedout room — the cave — falling for the first hustle that comes along saying it’s all fake — can’t believe everything you see & hear now can you? — but why one thing over any other thing if the proof works? — fidgeting the cntrl systm gltch — [Captain we are registering some heavy verbal shit on the radar] — there were times when incoherence a feeling of disjuncture because more or less “fear of life” blahblahblah — literature for example eliding certain passages where it may seem narcissistically a mirror to watch itself die — from time to time in mock solemnity of lockdown hustle — as w/ mutually=assured deadhand clapping — the rhythm section laughs while it bleeds — snare to an eardrum — not a threat but a prophesy the bald soprano says — fuckme eyes ceaseless across the proscenium while their Wagnerian=in=Chief pulls another ventriloquist mime=reversal — MURDERS EXIST THAT DO NOT REQUIRE EVIDENCE OF A MURDERER! — popping=up mysteriously in all kinds of optics & situations the way a default setting programmed to appear spontaneous — whenever a piece of humxn wallpaper was required — a foil — a revenant — a masked crusader armed w/ a handbook of enhanced interrogation techniques — the victim is strapped to an inclined board & doused w/ water to simulate drowning etc. — allowing for the fact that arachnids breathe with both lungs & tracheae — how will they punish it? — the surveilling lens sees all but the thing it seeks — biopsy of mind’s eye — haemorrhaging its assent — to each question respond yes — though nothing can stop it — once the machine has you in its teeth like crows conspiring to murder — they intend to tear the story out of you a gutted pig hung on a chain stuffed into cocktail sausages — 10 million Frankensteins & still the plague productionline churns=out nothing but defects — “ever forward on a front of revolutionary struggle” — all the basic forgotten lifeprocesses — dark seeds sprouting props for a period revenge fantasy — as if the only way in or out was to require transfusion — though w/ a laxative there’s no ambiguity — the relief of having foregone the last shreds of selfrespect for a modest payment — but capitalism like the Inquisition is prepared to burn everything to force a confession that it is the one true G.O.D. in this universe — they’ve had their eye on the Arachnoid right from the start — guilt by fact of being involved with or connected — for example anyone found breathing the same atmosphere — inner cop=voice sez Y’RE THE ENEMY — skin crawling to spiderhole audit paranoia — plot is potlatched — rapid fire turned to interrogate the prone suspect — creates resemblance between a thing & a stain — what’s written on the page is what’s written with the body also — tracing a path through bogfill — the mythical salamander island — under ceremonial duress the limbs coalesce or come apart — one moment a rational being the next an axolotl — crushed beneath a bootheel — raped — drowned — nailed to a crucifix — this humxn form strangled w/ a piece of its own intestine like a spider tangled in its web — but if the Arachnoid is the name of something it’s nothing we’ve ever seen — no matter how often the prose evokes a view from a towerblock over year=zero killingfields — paranormal acreages receding into a sniper’s 2=point=perspective like a Brunelleschi bodydump — now submerged like a secret deathwish beneath verdant rice paddies — now buried under landfill — streams of 4:00a.m. humxn traffic converging as far as the eye etc. — Mekong Delta très picaresque this time of year — opiumdollar g=string goldentriangle — in their dreams they’re performing a headstand on a landmine & laying bets both ways — monsoon flooding synapses corridors stairwells — a mattress afloat on a sea of littoral backwash graffitied with indelible scoria — THEY DETEST WHAT THEY CAN’T OWN DESPISE WHAT THEY DO — a red filament burning in the sub=cortex — time crystals flickering in a two=way mirror — dollar=semaphores of cunt anus mouth — prised — taken — pinioned — tokened — prismed — the hypnotised fly is drawn to the trap the way an adversary is drawn to an illgotten wager — Mistress Fortune w/ knees up in the grass advertising for first=comers — a deft encincturing movement of the pineal gland w/ forefinger & thumb — cutting off the supplyline at pointofcontact — Ɖiện Biên Foutre thy greeneyed colonial menteur parleying terms — like an echo in a shellcasing — their G.O.D. only rents this space & now the cheque’s bounced — tripping the arclights fantastique — stoned alien Buddha head=to=foot in Agent Orange junglerash wades through sunrise & unignited fueldump as cloudburst & swarms of mosquitorats rain from asbestos false=ceilings into the collective bubblebath — waving a surgical scalpel because not yet drowning — gangrene pared away on bayonet=point like tainted mimolette to make soup — as now the Shaman prepares the sacred potion in a covered bowl — crow foot — masticated root=fibre — the’re sprinkling libations — petroleum — stelazine — those are pixels that were their eyes — naked child lops off the demon=head with an obsessively honed machete — scoops out mango flesh coconut meat grey matter — dead brain coral hiding a lionfish — Orphic heads loll upon the exposed reef — openmouthed — lipsyncing to seagull screams — another sleepless night in another transit lounge — TVs blaring sans cesse Việt Minh pop — you look in their eyes & see only dead Amerikans — why give yr enemy the comfort of believing their world cannot burn? — art comes at a cost like everything else [if anyone cld do it they wld] — if the Arachnoid cld paint their inner lives it wldn’t resemble anything — a surrounding miasma — you wake neck=deep in it mutely screaming — the slugs are at the door! pour on the gasoline! — so happy they jump for joy — so joyful happy they jump — so hapless they jump joyfall — ah the Queen of England’s arse upon the royal commode! — ah the décors of concentration camps! — despite the times’ compulsory optimism the Arachnoid is a bleak & passive drama — such a beacon of embarrassed consciousness — because not having hit on the right angles — they were always bound to crucify a simpleton you cld see it in their eyes — who wants to be sermonised committing homicide when dogged incomprehension etc.? — a roadmap w/ many wrong turns — plaguepits — universal suffrage — the humxn silence of empty streets — birds in the sky — nature healing — this fecundating extinction event live=streamed on intercosmic TV — meaning the watcher is always somehow there by chance — “& those who are concerned by what it represents” — listen — the sky has been falling on their heads for many a long year — also what is inside their heads — that too evolved from gravity — silk=gauge & web=complexity factored to biomass — when subjected to conditions in outerspace web=building behaviour is nevertheless shown to adapt to conditions which cannot have occurred before in the entire evolutionary history of orb spiders — brainshocked by Freudian dialysis — when did the present start to exist? — once upon a time humxns in animal skins — they came they departed — for every nexus of institutional power another race of selfhaters — sucking martyrs’ milk to the hum of neurasthenic driftmusic — Kissinger & Wernher von Braun — BARBARISM FOR THE BARBARIANS! — such an endearing sight all the false hopes waiting to be culled — literature by comparison was a salutary state of decrepitude — stirring Joycean macaronics around Phở Nguyễn’s wok — throwing smoke in the eyes of the invading gawkery — to disrupt ulteriors — to deconstruct the whispering lampshade — squatting in the jungle w/ nothing in common but history — their nameless children climb mango trees slide down branches with machetes in their eyes — spirits of stone — grove — moonbeam flicker — we’ve all heard the voiceofexperience crying in the dark — the demon comforting w/ hemlock — the stone commendatore — malarial swamps beckon to minds festooned w/ temple gold — leprous jade Buddhas — rainbow serpents w/ ruby eyes — rumours from the lost city of Panoptia — swallowed by the jungle without so much as a trace — the stuff of lotuseaters’ dreams — yage séances — ouijaboard gibberings — 5=HT2A receptor agonist psychedelics down the neural blockchain into the mind=sump — all that’s solid melts to cumstain stripsearch at midnight borderpost — Germany Year Zero — dragged like a clubfoot towards destinies considerably remote from this one — drastic paths under the machineroom floor to an escapehatch in Mothra’s egg — there to be tended by Shobijin priestesses of the sacred island — instructed in the ways of ancient telekinesis & genome acceleration — translated by the highwire cremaster of a tinfoil chrysalis — une arche=en=ciel — another under=the=radar fly=by=night operation parleying fools’ gold into a retirement fund for suicide bombers — [history teaches that only a miracle will save them] — once more the radium=eyed monster rises from the deep — once more an asteroid hurtles through space — the camera ever=faithful to yr desire rushes in for a close=up — words leap from a burning window onto the page — life is always a capacity for something else — [the lesser of two evils e.g.] — pulling back skin to reveal a short=circuit in the works — it clings to you the more you struggle — like oil on water — iron in the veins — invisible driftnets harvesting the night — the second you open yr mouth to breathe — a hundredweight of drowned sibilants — sluiced down the waterspout — suicided by subterfuge — food for obituary artists forced to subsist on a margin of statistical error — passing through walls isn’t what it used to be — in spite of vanishing breath — a true messianic demeanour requires money changing hands — Ur=chronic & ratings=obsessed — nothing saved that isn’t first retailed — kicking back on the old potholed bushtrack to Golgotha — so tasty y’ll wanna EAT YR FINGERS OFF! — more suggestive pleasures associated w/ smells & sounds — mob hungry for carnage howling in unison — lewdly dancing particles of psychic terror — the body aches to achieve its metaphysical end — pinioned upon the soul’s precipice — naked in martyrised bondage contraption — prière inversée — [“plz fuck me so I can glimpse the void”] — thus all metaphors come to pass by holy communion — like the real presence returning to haunt a sucked=out parody machine — TV in one of its more dignified moments — there is not ONE unconscious — there are no SAFE WORDS — collectively speaking the world=on=the=brink & its posthumous return aren’t opposed figments — wanting to be immolated or dance in the inferno — exactly how many demons cld fit inside one person’s head? — “I” must indeed find other forms — folded in its web [like an API] — but not because it wants to — [is it possible for something to want to be humxn?] — like a rumour whispering to itself — that the Arachnoid’s just one more strung=out hack spreading & harvesting code — w/out even knowing what it is — hahaha — & unable to make the voices stop — it didn’t matter if the file was corrupt they had it all on tape — even the deletions

Louis Armand is the author of THE COMBINATIONS (2016), THE GARDEN (2020) & VAMPYR (2021). He lives in Prague & Beja.