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Kafka Sees His History In The Mirror [from: Kafka In The Castle]

angelo-decorative-corner-silver-leaf-bevelled-mirror-deknudt-mirrors-9166-0-1430262718000

04 March 1917

I dreamed I was a prophet. The prophet Amshel, which is my Jewish name. And, I could talk to God. And I was looking at myself in the mirror.

And I was looking back at me. I mean, Franz was in the mirror, looking back at me – the me of Amshel – who was looking in the mirror. Except, I was as much me looking out, as I was me looking in.

The wall behind the prophet was painted red, while the one behind Franz was of brown wood. They both could raise their fists at each other, and sometimes did. In unison, of course. That was the law.

“Certainly, you may speak to God,” said Franz. “What is there in that? Everyone speaks to God – in sentences, in actions, with their lives. No one is more talked-to in the Universe than God. But what a prophet needs, is to have God speak back.”

And then God spoke, from somewhere behind the mirror, but He did not speak to Amshel. He spoke to Franz.

“You are on the wrong side,” said God.

“Speak to me,” said Amshel.

“Wrong side of what?” asked Franz.

“Of the mirror,” answered God.

“Don’t speak to him,” shouted Amshel. “He is from the world of vipers.”

And Amshel raised his fist, but Franz had to hold up his fist in turn.

“I am not the prophet you seek,” said Franz, and pointed his finger at the mirror. “There is your prophet.”

And Amshel was also pointing toward the glass. “Not him – you don’t want him.” He then turned his hand toward himself. “I’m the one you want.”

But Franz was just as vehement, as his thumb arched toward his own chest. “Not me.” For emphasis, he placed his hand over his heart. “In this, God, you have erred.”

And his words echoed those of Amshel, who also had his hand upon his heart. “In this, God, you have erred.”

And the two faces stared at one another, their fingers clutching at the garments they wore.

But God was silent.

DE

(image) http://www.enidhuttgallery.com/images/_lib/angelo-decorative-corner-silver-leaf-bevelled-mirror-deknudt-mirrors-9166-0-1430262718000.jpg

The Convict On The Bus And The Man of Motorcycles

well, it ‘might’ have looked like this

(image)

All sorts and conditions of people take the bus (myself included) . On this particular trip of some years ago I took note of the two talkative folk who sat in front of me. One was on oe side of the aisle, the other was on the other.

Directly in front was a handsome young man in his twenties who had, that morning, just been released from penitentiary. He was on his way home. Across the aisle from him was a grizzled and bearded man in his mid-life. He had never taken a bus ride before.

 They talked. I listened.

The convicted felon (a cheerful and polite fellow) had, with a partner, robbed a grocery store. Stole the safe. Got a lot of money (thousands in the double digits). They got away with it. However, some days later, his partner got a case of the ‘guilts’ and turned himself in.  And told what had happened. And his buddy, unplanned and unwanted, soon followed. Fourteen months.

The bearded fellow, never on the bus, had a host of motorcycles and vans and such, and travelled in them. he took a header when he hit an empty pop bottle. He was a hippy from way back and more or less continues to this day. Even the bus driver recognized the van he described, famous for its art work.

The former inmate revealed how to make ‘moonshine’ from unimaginable ingredients; how to make money from ‘nicotine patches’ by cutting them into strips and selling the contents; and that cigarettes behind bars cost $15 each. Oh – yes – he also  lost his girlfriend because of his actions. “A BIG mistake,” he said.

I gotta admit, all this, plus the beautiful scenery, whiled away the time.

DE

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