I have finally started reading (listening to the audiobook of) American Gods.
As I feared, it is good. I need to finish it soon, while knowing that I need even more to know that it never ends. No wonder Gaiman and Pratchett co-operated and colluded to create a myth of the Antichrist.
The real world keeps intruding on my time with the gods. Project deadlines, children’s school issues, a sick wife. The trivialities of my reduced existence keep dragging me back from the then-there. I suffer these insults with the best grace I can.
The gods and artists, on the other hand, are urging me to default on my imagined debt to society.
“Abandon your family and to run off to Cancun or Ibiza and paint naked women,” urges Gauguin.
“Men too,” moans rock hardened Dionysus, “body painting knows no gender.”
“… butt so much sex” ejaculates Henry Miller, second class satyr and third class citizen.
“Run off with your cousin,” theorize Einstein and Darwin.
“Even better, your wife’s little sister,” says a voice I vaguely recognize from the long ago.
loki advises i write like e.e. cummings, because one in a one hundred will get an awful pun.
I am an avowed atheist. For me all the philosophy, liberalism and religion of the ages is nothing more than an attempt to escape the inevitable graves of I and Thou. We who will be buried too deep for the worms to find; others, burned, contributing to the warming of our world. We will all, in our way, try to escape the natural ending of our being. It is only for the peasants and the soldiers to feed the future. The privileged ‘we’ will leach into the earth our noxious fluids – part formaldehyde, a greater part entitlement. Sick to the end in every possible way.
As Homo Sapiens Sapiens, I have to believe in the oldest of the old gods. If you want to call them a trinity, you can. I won’t because that has had a different meaning since.
I believe in Civis, because it is she who keeps me safe in the modern world. She who ensures that the police will come in time. She who says my employer will pay me the monthly wage when it is due. She who says that justice and mercy, in equal measure, will guide the order of MY world, fuck yours. Without Civis, I am but a beast. I cannot be that thing.
I believe in Eros, because without him I am not that which I am. I will say no more, my Indian goddess understands.
I believe in Kaos, the Ur-god. It is the intellect which drives me to whatever heights I may achieve. It is that which my first real ancestors, looking to the sky with understanding, knew. Kaos has become has become Chaos has become mathematics and magic. It has remained steadfastly it. It will always be my other god.
Those who know, know. Those who do not know, also know. Watch my hands.
I was born in the month and the year and on the day of the trickster god. My mother lay in labor twenty-three hours to see that it was so. She and my father loved me as best they knew how after I was borne. As ravens watching over Loki, they loved me with complexity. Even as their better children were born, another three in five years, they loved me.
Was this Loki even their son? Even if son of that son was their spiritual grandson? Does it matter?
Only the last names matter. They loved me for the name. Later they loved me for other reasons I do not understand, but always they loved me in their way. I always knew my name.
And, at the last, I will say my Germanic name. “I am Black. Not black, Black. I am from the hedged vale. I am the darkness that crawls beneath the hedges of the vale. I scuttled among the roots of the hedges and I saw you. I am darkness black and I know you.”
I have had disturbing fantasies of late. I have day-dreamed of picking herbs from my garden. Dressed in a pragmatic apron I gather greens to feed my friends.
For very special friends that last sentence gets funking metaphorical, but only because of Elliot’s gardens.
I have dreamed about a garden and a kitchen and a magic that happens twixt the twain. The magic of my hands.
Do I believe in the Trickster god?
He who is the fourth of three?
Is he the archetype for me?