Stage-struck – The eyes are opened, and they fill this room with a glow that brings a weal on its own. The mouth leans forward to let the lips make a few vertical majestic moves coupled with some gracious gesticulations from the other limbs. I’m standing here, staying still as a stone, on a stage filled with cracking noises coming from the wooden planks getting older through invisible time. I inhale, and then I start to deliver a thread of words supposedly coming from my heart. My tongue is shaking through the sounds of order, the bursts of revolutions and the sumptuous compliments I give to the ladies in the first row. One motion after the other, I walk across the stage at different speeds like Don Juan. From stage left to right, I become what I’ve never been. I lose all knowledge of my identity above the curtains and under the acute surveillance of a hundred faces stricken by my presence. They know who I am. They can tell what I’m like even though I don’t have the means to do it anymore. A single step forward is enough to get rid of every notion of soul and meaning. Next, another shout mimicked with my hand goes on to lose itself in the middle of some theatrical fight, and forgets itself amidst the ruins of an existential collapse. My body stands here, as my mind becomes subjugated by that of another. I learn how to live through becoming this other. I take on the ownership of his words and his spontaneous diction, so much it becomes a metaphysical surgery. And now I’m sitting down on the edge of the stand as a man enjoying the last breath of his youth. I’m waiting. I’m waiting for the souls in the audience to capsize on their seats all the way to the back of the theater. I’m waiting for a rain of emotions to flood their faces one after the other in between the triggering silences of the play. Only when the end gets closer in time do I take hold of myself again. My physical exhaustion makes me happier about the real world. Time slows down and I suddenly perceive more easily this other stage on which I keep living all the time. It only took me a few hours of adopting a seemingly fictional life to find back some adoration for my own. To act is nothing but the action of enjoying one’s the body and the versatility of their soul.

This is a translation of the original French text Sur les planches.

I

Life is mere disappointment when the clocks keep ticking and the sun goes high. Always bring around the bad news on a sunny day, for its receiver will have a nice weather as a consolation. “At least it’s nice outside” the shopkeeper says, as if the vanishing of a cloud weighs better than a verbally announced tragedy. How ironic is it that the star which enlightens the deceived on the source of their suffering is the same one that lights up their world. True things hurt: they make a man shake with as much resonance as a baby’s throat playing disastrous chords from the moment it exits the womb. Do you hear the wind breathing through the maple trees? Its vernal freshness comes caressing your rosy cheeks as you ponder on what it is that makes you generous to others. No one needs to know their own limitations, yet this is what every being seems to strive for. Would you crave to know where the line stands between your strength and its negation? Think of how it would affect your sense of self to know fully well the place you hold on a map, rather than being amusingly tortured by the deprivation of this knowledge. Tell me, dear inquirer of your own borders, who is the son when his mother knows the horizon of his life? Where goes the heart when the blood remains stagnant? Why should the kingdom of your desires be stopped by some border when doubt and nothingness can be the meekly comfort in the depth of your failures? To hell with curiosity, to hell with certainty! Pray for the clocks to keep ticking a second once more after the other ’til heaven never comes down to Earth.

II

We shall hear the silences of the heart rather than its beats. The noise is constant and it promises to come back to one’s ears. Listen to how this quiet void tells the true nature of one’s thoughts. Listen inside your chest to what does not come about. Shut your sight and feel this emptiness yearning to be unheard. Although your whole being is known by the fences that guard it, the peaceful quietness of your heart shall reveal everything but your essence. By knowing this Nothingness that negates who you are, you discover the nature that shapes your very own soul.

III

Where comes about the world that implodes on itself? Hold on to sweet announcements they bring to your ears and have your lips be drenched from their anticipated reality! Wait in line to watch a truth unfold, and have your hands cut off from the unknown. Have them give up rocks and wooden sticks in exchange for tools specially made for you. Be the monkey of your Man, be his laughing-stock! For he holds a void more useful to life than any of your tools can do. Hammers and sickles are nothing but pointless fuss when a single one of us could exist for us all.

When the doves cease their whistling,
And their wings cut by the blooded pitchforks,
Only then, will you hear the sound of my voice,
Screaming for you to give me a hand,
Urging you to put a kiss on my forehead,
Only then, will the world know how I truly loved you.

I

You removed from your life this man who knew not what he had done. He tried to capture an ounce of wisdom with his bare hands and he had failed lamentably in front of your blue gazing eyes. He feels sorry for his own pain and yours. “It’s been a rough week” you said, and oh how I had wished he could have been by your side. He owes you books and bits of wisdom that you had picked from your own tree, then placed lovingly in his hair and between his fingers. After all he is a man not so simple who, day by day, becomes more remorseful over what he is offered by this life and yourself: a delightful past much too gone.

II

The tongue is so useless when you think it would be of no use if we ran into each other on the street. Words were tremendously meaningful when we first acknowledged each other. Once you forgot my name and turned your ears away from my sounds, I could not help but become a blank book whose last remaining bit of hope is enacted by blindly asking to be read one more time.

The Popular Illness – So many men knocked on my door moaning over the pains they used to have. “I was ill, one of them said, I remember it very well! O how sick I used to be! Sick of this and that, of everything and nothing! Have I been struck by life’s ordinariness? It doesn’t matter, for I was ill and I remember it.” Today still, I cannot help but watch humanity soak itself into the sufferings long gone and the pains that it has yet to discover. Here I am, living in the Occidental world, the land on which one needs to suffer in order to exist. My blood boils when the words “rights” and “progress” get echoed from the young blokes’ lips. These are no more of a cure, but a new way of celebrating each and every symptom of the next societal plague instead. Rather than being doctors, the philosophers have become mere paramedics of morality. All around me, my brethren and my peers have replaced the words with groans and screams. Agonizing does not emerge from human nature anymore. It is instantaneously created as soon as a glimpse of guilt appears on each and every street corner. And when this scourge, tortured itself by the screams of its victims, begins to vanish from the surface of the Earth, no one else is pained by its disappearance. One may believe that happiness and peace only come back on Mankind’s doorstep in silence, despite our voices so loud and powerful.

About The Supremacy of Love – What are the oppressors doing to the dearest ideas of ours? They hammer these marble blocs, strive themselves like vultures toward the modern values, all of which will go down sooner or later in the history books. We ended here, in the middle of these utopic constructions subdued by a foolproof fear, with no kiss to alleviate ourselves and no words to hear each other. I feel you feverish and shaking in front of these newly improvised martyrs who scream at the top of their lungs, all of this despite your beaming look and gleeful stance. The sky sprinkled with grey clouds oversees the dancing of my eyes all over your hands, your face, and your smile so young, yet bleeding from the surreal atrocities of the world. “Absurd” is the word you slipped into my ear as you echoed your disgust in front of this sadistic delirium. So I remove myself from the sternness of this place and I grab my cynical coat hoping it would save you from your humanitarian revulsion and welcome you inside my arms, and among my fictional comfort. Hand in hand, we dodge the seriousness of every face and the astonishment of these living corpses in order to run away on this road made of clay towards this marble column – the only one that keeps resisting against the gunshots, hammers, and sickles. Each body’s love betrays the ideals of the world and reminds us the uselessness of each and every kind of belief. We are both stricken by deadly philosophical bullets as well as by traumatic and distanced dreads. Even though you think differently than me, I love you, and I couldn’t say why.

“Tell me, O wisest Bear of them all,
Hast thou found back the honey that was lost at once?
Did the yellow-stripped creatures crown you
With a better offering from this forest?”

And the hairy beast answered:

“None of this is what reconciliates me with the seasons.
I may dream of Australian lands and hide from the coldest winds,
But truth is, I simply took hold of my eyes,
And came back on the paved road where I left it.

I once met a magician of the soul,
Who could make virtues appear in her eyes,
Like dancing sea waves.

She would smile at the rain,
And have a laugh when in vain,
Nature does once too much pain.

She then left my world as she entered it,
In a profound silence between the flicking of books
and the scratching of pens on pages.

Never had I recovered from this devastating loss,
Until she reappeared before me,
With the cure to my dystopian dreams.

I look at the trees today and thank them,
For the shadows they provided me,
When I was blinded by her tricks and charms.

I walk on this earth today,
Knowing fate’s absurd being,
Is no more than a mere child’s play.