Pondicherry, Crocus, March 3559

Dear Giandomenico,

Thanks for your last—dated Feb 2009.

In answer, I’d say that what happens is this. The dance goes astray. You break the mould of planet Earth, just like the cactus might break the plant pot and crawl across the window sill. You take on all the planets—those feed troughs. Even etching yourselves into the rare mist of melancholic Saturn. Your—our—yellow period. You find many things you can make use of and—as usual—throw the rest away.

We are engaged in gorging and digesting, much as you were. You became—we’ve become—much richer and hence much poorer. A kind of somnolence has set in. Shakespeare has been lost—perhaps become bacon, if puns are still acceptable in your time period (I know they were not for a while). Even adjectives and adverbs have gone but I dug out some of the ‘decadent’ dictionaries as I know you still used them in 2009. If I use these terms incorrectly then you must tell me, as I am studying ancient languages at the University.

We can no longer be described by the use of adjectives, only by nouns. We rich still live well with our malevolent graces (if I’ve got that right) but the spice/herb of life has gone. Everything is the same. Sameness has set in. The dinner, the after-dinner speeches, the Hemingway Players. We live on tautened nerves rather than by real emotion.

Sometimes on our computers we catch an old black and white flat—I like the ones from the 1940s best—Bogart, Bacall—there is something about that low-key lighting that I find fascinating. I also like the portrayal of night in those flats as indeed in some of the old books. It must have been quite something, night. To have split up the day into day and night seems like an idea of rare genius. I would like to try an experiment and live like that but I would be limited to my own apartment, of course, as we have no moon. I would like to meet one of those lunar beauties (cigarette girls?) there is so much talk of—the ones who only came out at night.

We are moving further and further away from you. The next planet we are moving to is certainly going to be outside of this universe—Alpha Centauri—that much is for sure. It might even be out of this time zone as only last week Dr Bergomat cracked the physical time code and sent two mice back to planet Earth 1996.

So, who knows, my friend. We might even meet up in black and white, where we can exchange adjectives down by one of those harbour cafés, with a Frenchman playing the accordion in the background (Potes de Paris) and where we have a glass of Ricard in the foreground. It does taste of liquorice, doesn’t it? I miss the sea, even though I have never had one. I miss the faded finery and the stockings of cerise silk.

I was a bit puzzled by your saying that well-to-do gentlemen don’t send verse. If not then what do they send?

Until the next communication, my friend,
Yours Anita K


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