21. "Checkmate"

"An indecipherable assassination takes place in the initial pages; a leisurely discussion takes place toward the middle; a solution appears in the end."

- Jorge Luis Borges, "An Examination of the Work of Herbert Quain"

* * *

by Luke Edwards

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Episode Twenty-One

Rimbaldian Rhapsody

Keep yourself alive.

Put me out of my misery.


To entertain, I sing and play on the edge.

Now I'm here (FBM).

Let me entertain you. Let me entertain you.¹

Leave it in the lap of the gods. What more can I do?

Leave on time, dead on time, leave on time.

The Prophet's Song. My own "Prophet's Song."

I sing and play on the edge.

The March of the Black Queen.

I'm thinking of something someone said about the quality shared by those who live on the edge, but I don't remember who said it, what was said.

White Queen (As It Began).

I'm going to read The Gnomobile.

Spread your wings.

I sing and play on the edge, on the edge.

Who needs you?

Leaving home ain't easy.

White Man? Long Away? You and I?

Put me out of Jim Caan's² misery.

The Millionaire Waltz?

Let us entertain you. Let us entertain you.

It's late.

We sing and play over the edge.³

All dead, all dead.

Leave on time.

Life is real. Life is real. (That song, penned by Freddie Mercury, was dedicated to John Lennon, written not long after Lennon's murder.)

I'm going to read The Gnome-mobile

I can't live without you.

Don't stop me now.

These are the days of our lives. ("Days of Our Lives" is a soap opera I watched from the age of 8 until I was at least 18.)

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

The show must go on.

More brainstorming for Sutter's Gold, the Blaise Cendrars forgery he is preparing:

The quotes appear on pages two and three of Sutter's Gold by Blaise Cendrars, 1926, Hardcover, Harpers. There is no title page or acknowledged translator (although one page of the 179-page book has a footnote and the note ends with the abbreviation "transl."). One color plate, entitled "The Great Madness" (detached but obviously part of the book) appears on a page where the missing title page might be. The forgery was prepared and then offered and bought on e-bay the first week of March, 2003. 

"It was May 5, 1834, at Runenberg in the canton of Basle. [...] The last rays of the sun gilded the ancient house-fronts. From every chimney a straight plume of smoke rose toward the cloudless sky. Afar off, somewhere in the plain, the creak of a wagon.

"Suddenly the peace of these tranquil peasants was shattered by an incident. A stranger had arrived. [...] Even at midday a stranger is a rare apparition at Runenberg."

It's a beautiful day.

Fun it!

My life has been saved.

Cool! (FBM)

Halfway to hell (subtitle of a History channel program on the building of the Golden Gate Bridge; "Halfway to Hell Gang" was suggested as a name for what the workers could call their exclusive club after the bridge was half completed).

Here's a great conceit: I know that Greg Baysans was born "Boes-hans" - a German name. How about if I put someone in the village, a child who is actually the great-great-great-grandfather of Greg Baysans!

"He had stopped at the first house in the villlage and had asked to be directed to the municipality. It was old Buser to whom he spoke. Turning his back brusquely, Buser seized his little grandson Hans by the ear and ordered him to take the gentleman to (where he was going)."

("Boes" is an Anglicization of "bös," an adjective. "Buser" would be a variant spelling of "böser.")

More brainstorming: move the footnote to Borges's "Secret Miracle" to this chapter instead of where it now is. Where it now is was meant to be a temporary storage for the quote until I found the place I really wanted it, which is this page and the Cendrars forgery preparation.

Edward Lacie is a quitter and doesn't come 'round much anymore.

Made in heaven, made in heaven. It was all meant to be.

To entertain, we sing and play

On the edge, over the edge.

As it began with Queen II, their White/Black concept album I played over and over.

Am I going to read The Gnomobile or The Gnome-mobile?

Show must go on.

The first is by Upton Sinclair. 

I want it all.

The second is as retold by Mary Carey for the Disney movie.

Was it all worth it?

It's also a book, a Whitman classic (I saw it on ebay for $30.00 and bought it at a yard sale for a quarter a few weeks ago On ebay it sold for $31.00).

Rain must fall.

I sing and play.

To entertain, we sing and play over the edge.

Let me enter

tain you.

My name is Luca. My name is Lucas.

My name is Edward. My name is Edwards.

Love of my life, don't leave me.

I'm out there on the edge, over the edge.

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