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Après Film

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File back up the aisle of the cinema, walk
out into the street, preferably alone, the sheen
of neon streaking rain-wet asphalt. Post-war Prague.
Or is it Vienna, Warsaw, New York? Enter
a café or bar, clasp a mug in your hands, cold
meeting heat and the silk of liquid. Window-mirrored,
sleek shark-bellied cars flash by, every third the carrier
of a possible assassin. The echo of footsteps in the fog,
trench coats belted with cynicism. A flute’s atonal notes
reverberate beneath your feet, other feet running fast
through criss-crossing chambers, tunnels, a subterranean
maze. A match is struck, and for a moment a single eye
peers out of the darkness, a look lucent with fear. Hunch-shouldered,
you shrug back into your coat, body hot, blood-heavy,

fn0. _Arc_ 56, Summer 2006