And I was a kingly mover of signifiers, well-schooled in black & white; lay like an eye in fine-etched dreams, commissar of an aquarium universe. I sketched the frantic paths of peons over morning espressos, shooing away the gold-lit wafts of my breath’s tobacco and cancelling the bright white noise with violin whispers. Evenings, moon through the Velux, and alchemy. Cities lattice-woven seemed to glow brilliant through the typeface and promised eventual rest in their windows – deep plush beds with linen pages blank, where minds might exhale their spindly thoughts and sleep. I awoke in a Brooklyn apartment alone among piles of books – the guests long gone. I sank to my knees. I’d been clinging on to stones in a dewy world of groaning orchids. From sunsets wistful on the terrazza to breaking, crumpling prostrate below the cold colonnade, tearing my beard, imagining the sick smell of warm midnight loving in the backseat; choking for a single taste of tawdry rusting blood, a single draught of most noxious deathly life. I raised decrepit hands, match quivering to my gasping; the books would not burn.