When I was a child I learned to copy. The great artists first, Magritte, da Vinci, Turner. Each brush stroke, a sense of symmetry. There was none of myself in it and yet, in the end, the things I chose to copy were all me. Things crawling out of darkness. Light from a single source, a vague expression as if the subject were momentarily distracted, caught out at a transition between one state and the next. This repositioning of the great erotic texts reminds me of that room, smelling of oil pain and turps, my board spread with crimson, my brushes face down, clotted with paint. It is a thing that must be done carefully. The choice must reflect me in some way. Kawabata, Batailles and Salter are the best of it because, like the paintings they all climb gently into the light from some place darker than the real world.
Reading is a part of this writing process. I read, distracted, sad, furious. If it weren't for this book I would sink into the oblivion of happiness dispensed day by day until I am content. I dream of bridges. I speak of them at breakfast and the others stop, warily, watching me like an unexploded bomb from a different time.
I will walk to the bridge again. I will take my book, the Salter. I am afraid of what I will have to read next. The Cleland may make me take the plummet. The Gemmel will send me out under a bus.
I am too tired of it. I want the shock of obliteration which might wake me from the darkness, a sudden single source of light. My nose is full of linseed oil. I open my mouth to the acid sting of turps. My mouth is full of ulcers. My gums receed. I can't stop till Irene's Cunt but I am tired now. And there is nothing to be done about it.