At the Elephant-Bishop

Philosophical panoramic trail in automn tones between the heliotropic cat Felix Blum

and the bittersweet cockattoo scholar. 

June 29 – Evening at the Elephant-Bishop.

 

Three tangerines shone in the sky as I followed Lord Alfred‘s invitation. The dashing cockatoo was already awaiting me at the Elephant Bishop, where he used to meditate on contrapunctal chess problems with cake and cognac.

 

Lord Albert‘s secret Gin & Tonic recipe refreshed me like an ice bath at a Himalayan peak and thus I spoke with loosened tongue: about Aunty Golda‘s piano playing and Aunty Gertrude‘s rheumatic delirium; about Aunty Gundula‘s wonder herbage and Aunty Geraldine‘s eternally red geraniums; and about the Capellmeister in the orange box and his message from the bottle.

 

The cockatoo thoughtfully sucked on his pipe: „My dear Felix, this is a Magnificat! You have been chosen... what for? would be the question now. As my beloved Lady Abigail – God bless her soul – used to say: Everything has its time and hour.“

Lady Abigail, portrayed by Lord Albert on a Palm Sunday morning

I forgot myself: „Mylord, please! Everyone knows that you were never married, let alone widowed. Why do you always speak on behalf of a Lady Abigail who never existed outside your imagination? And why was Lady Abigail born dead in your conceptual world?“

 

The Lord let fire and brimstone rain on me: „Felix, I forbid you to trample Lady Abigail’s memory in mire with your taloned paws! Like the path of the righteous, she shines in the holiest of all the holy shrines of my soul. I was, I am and shall remain a inveterate widower and carry my beloved Abigail in my heart as it pleases me. Fluttering like an origami in a sparkling wine shell against sunlight as the dusk shines through the physalis garnish – she is just gorgeous...“.

He continued: "Felix, you are a heliotropic hedonist, but I warn you: one day you will get up with the sun, stretch your smooth buttocks up to the sky, and face death in the form of an empty threshold of limestone cold. Aunty Golda is an elderly lady – her piano playing will be doomed to silence one evening, and the source of milk and honey will dry up in her dainty china. A wet shadow of yourself, you will seek Aunty Gertrud, who will stare through you like a salt pillar in her rheumatic delirium. Crannies will you scratch on Aunty Gundula‘s door and wait in her herbal garden for her return - but the wonderhealer will never come home again. No more water shall drip from Aunty Geraldine‘s balcony and shake you out of your sleeping hour with cheerful wetness – for Geraldine fades behind closed curtains, and her eternally red geraniums turned grey... Abandon or being abandoned, that is the way of the world. I left the wallpainting darkness of the cave and moved with my equipage into the aerial castle of ideal worlds. In this splendour you must contemplate my counterpoint with Lady Abigail – God bless her soul.“

 

The Lord emptied the half-full chalice to its last and leafed through the anthology of his memories: „As you probably know, my late generator William Edgar indulged in his favourite vices, cognac and tobacco throughout his dissolute life, and gambled away his family heritage at baccarat before sinking into the brookside marsh while duck hunting. I, got hired as a Magic Flute prop to finance my passion for cuff links, pearl grey suits and champagne pyramids. My memory was very vividly minted by the infernal gossip kitchen at the heart of the theatre. There, an open fire spoke in tongues, smacking a spiked sucking pig, which bit into an apple of discord. Its pirouettes produced an infernal heat, a histrionic scum screeched into its flanks and fat flowed into the yodeling tan. I draped myself in dignity and left the theatre with my coat collar up. The unbearable boredom of being eroded the inner caves of my soul and had already dug deep ravines herein, as Lady Abigail entered my life through the garden door like an elderberry nocturne in white.“

 

Thus spoke the dashing cockatoo as the night sank with lilac wings. His big eyes gazed ecstatically into the colourful realm of his dreams, for the Lord had drunk to the dregs and retired to his bed chamber.

 

Special thanks to Brenda Landes for her diligent proofreading of this english translation.

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