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Lotte’s Song

In the folds of the unkempt eve of her birthday she sat all blossom and warm ashes. She gave herself with lipstick, dark and standing cold and stiff Lotte walked as if she were trying to swallow.
It wasn’t a mask for that one wasn’t left. But her eyes were deep night-dresses from which she would absently pull her hair half back from the drawstrings at the front of her mother who years later, after sex, would always talk about apartments. But that was still to come.
With a kind of innocence that has no place her grandmother had such a smooth strong purity of being. Give her whiskey in the afternoon; you could touch her. The room was dark musty and so unfathomable as to be almost arcane. As always a disturbingly biting draught flapping at the door. As the old woman took off all her own clothes and danced she stared at her toes, her careless ritual would leave her tired and the motes of dust floated awake cold and guilty. The fire before -lying back petulantly her night-gown leaving itself just tepid- and ashes behind. Dressing hurriedly she sat on the bed in a long white drunken slumber. Lotte wore the stiff cloth around her. Tugging, she hadn’t moved for hours. she told me of her childhood. A night on dear granny’s bed but being a child in woman’s lacquered eyes she saw she was Lotte Döll.
red and her eyes smudged.
Out into the burning light she had grown up with her mother an alcoholic peasant woman who was looking at her now. Again finishing the bottle that looked different every time, oppressively warm, and yet it had a fluid quality to it which slipped in through undisguised. You never quite knew who heavily slept in Lotte, gray and young. And never around the bed. Naked and silent her face told of her warm mother. Falling exhausted she would bleed to death in a small Berlin hearth.
She was so beautiful and innocent. Naiveté or calm has slipped off her shoulders and at her heart nothing walked with sadness except the sheets. They smelt of a peach little cough and breathed deeply as perched on the edge of the bed she swung her legs and gently kicked the swirl in a solid shaft of light.

[JC]

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