A bumble bee hurries over the sea an inch above the waves as I tow the cow’s carcass behind my boat. We plough slowly through the calm water to the head of loch Ainort where dream valley begins.


“She wants to be sure?”

So so sure it’s granite.


“She wants to be unsure?”

Never ever ever know if.


“It’s more than being certain?”

Dead, you know where you are there.


“Her world has no edges? Wrong?”

(It’s a gas)


“Her world is bounded so tightly not even the smallest anxiety can get in?”



“There was no room to put a step right?”

Always tripping me up.

“Right, but badly put.”

He smiled to himself & took out a yellow sheet of paper, calculating aloud.

“Is it really so difficult to work out when to telephone her?”

A string of black beads threading through the years.

“It has become extremely difficult,” he answered himself aloud. The waves slapped against the prow. He shifted his weight & the boat came back on line with the mountain peaks.

“She’s a parrot?”


“I’m getting the hang of this. She isn’t ever going to be sure because that’s not what she wants, despite her . . .have I said that already?”

He nodded.

“Boring. So wrong anyway.”

“Who acts as though if people say nothing they feel nothing?”

“Right . . . Oh yes . . .she does.”

“Caught you!”

“She’ll turn the suggestion down. ‘ Can’t just do it like that.’ She’ll say it’s manipulative, just satisfying myself not hearing what she needs . . .doesn’t she need one . . .I know I haven’t said what the whole plan was. Well naturally. I know it”

“You haven’t said what any of the plan was!”

“First. Getting the sex right . . .again. How can you pull anything out of chaos if the only thing in your mind is a hump, that you know she’s determined not to give you. You’re kidding yourself. Get that fixed first I said.”

“She told you to fuck off.”


It took ages to get the cow to sink. The farmers had to slit its belly & fill it full of boulders. It took lots of them & then they had to rope it up to keep them in.


“Now that sounds like filling it full of money.”

“I don’t know why?”

All she talked about was how much easier it could have been for her if I’d given her more money. But not how in order for that to have been possible she would have had to have changed some of her ways. All I thought about was fucking her. She said it showed.

It’s as if I support being with her by amalgamating, when I think of her, the hallucinations from sexual acts with some other woman to the emptiness of the reality with her. It gives a picture of her body which it never had & doesn’t have; it gives a presence now to actions that have long ceased to happen & creates acts that have never happened & never will; it gives a skeleton to shadows so they can walk out of the shade into view & dance. But all only because I enjoy another woman.

“Well what was the answer?”

“No. I’m bleeding. And if I wasn’t bleeding it would still be no.”

“Is the frustration tantalizing?”

“It’s not sexual frustration. I’m fucking someone else. It’s to do with not being able to get something done in the past & so sticking there.”

“But what?”

“Get past. That’s it.”

“Why didn’t they tie the boulders to the cow?”

“Ever tried that?”

The sea foam spattered & swirled in the blue plastic bowl as she peed into the slops.

“I’m going to open her legs wide,” he said. “You can’t stay here.”

Her belly tightened she wanted to watch. There was a smile of anticipation on her lips, her cheeks burned, she lifted a hand to feel her ear, it was icy, She nodded, but stood her ground. Would they trick her? Oh! Make her. Or would they turn on me if I stay.

Looking into the mirror behind the door she could see the three of them sitting cross-legged neatly positioned in a triangle with the other girl flat on her belly on the carpet. Her arms stretched out right to the fingertips, her eyes tightly shut, she had her legs crossed at the ankles. It seemed a fragile lock.


“That’s not a plan. It’s gratification. Trying to reward yourself for doing sweet nothing. I’m worth more than that. But we could try. You . . .I . . .We.”

“It was sweet fuck all before anyway. She knew that.”

“What did you expect when you asked. This.” And she lifted up her skirt.


The room was stiflingly hot.  Clouds of flies were turning madly over the traces of fish scales mixed with breadcrumbs on the table. They buzzed under the dirty knife trapping themselves with greed. Our mouths were dry, there had been nothing to drink with the meal.

“I’d say the devil woman is powerful because she calls up irresistible sexual forces in the man. She carries a small bell loose in her pocket so that she is followed by a thin tinkling sound which sinks into his mind without him being aware of it.”

We hung our heads concentrating, on not grinning.

“I’d say she could make him do anything . . .”

“It was the other way round, I think,” interrupted K., “those feelings turned her inside out. Turned her desire to envy.”


The keys jingled in his pocket as he ran upstairs. The smell of the crushed leaves of the creeper covering the outside wall permeated the stairwell. She stood on the landing propped against the wall like a filmstar. He threw the card at her & she caught it in front of her breast & pretended to crumple over it as if hit by a bullet.

“I used to sleep with that dog after I’d just been kicked out again & needed the comfort of another head on the pillow. Every night it got between me & the wall & slowly straightened its legs through the night until they were long & rigid. Then when the mutt arched its back at dawn it shoved me out of bed.”

She finished her fall delivering herself half into his arms.

“You have to hand it to them, mad people have a lot to put up with; dogs; the nonsense of reason. Who are these people?” She gestured at the card abandoned on the carpet. He held her wrist so she could bend & pick it up. He pointed.

“That’s the one we called the ‘crystal virgin’ & I never knew why.”