The House of Cicada

The House of Cicada

      The House of Cicada
      2,315 words
      René Adams

Multiple children of the cicada swarmed inside the hut, and laid down the bare branches of life. Brushing the couples bodies with their wings, selecting every crevice of their form as home in the un-lit atmosphere. They flew around the small room unbalanced by the weight of their human legs which hung from their thorax. Frank wept as they continued, applauding and dicing through the shadows. Proclaiming his sorrow for the expedition, fuelled only by the drive to submit unique material for reasons he didn’t yet know.

      He saw how the limbs in the swarm of chimeras outgrew their ability to flap correctly, slamming their solid half-bodies into the bamboo walls and off the floor. Their wings snapped off in the collisions. The female of the tribe held grip with Frank, infront of their faces, like two trees intermingling time, arms screaming.
      And brightly, it became morning, night, morning, night, many times. Outside and above the small sacred hut, where the sun perspired down through the thatched roof, and cast perspiring shadows inside and onto its statues, which were actually once lovers dancing, they held.
      Her body metabolised the intoxicants as they still continued to peak in Frank’s. The cicadas questioned Frank with two bright red eyes among their many, in the black, separated by a plastic nose and y mandibolic lust that moved towards him. They questioned the concept of him, within, their home. And asked him what he expected to achieve in this part of the world. The litany of questions came from the swarm’s moustached lips, and drolled out questions in a heavy myriad of lips, a fraction away from his own face.
      All away and beginning to burn in the madness, Frank swayed as the ceremony’s time began to pull him down. His arms were tattooed with the usual insignias of the Nevernae. Roots passing up from the palm, still bleeding from the sharp tapping lance that had placed them there. The heady smoke of the hut created eyes within the lines of his tattoo, and reached in the blackness guided across his forearms by the head of the tribe.
      The ink linked with the swarm of angry cicada’s flying in the black dust of the hut. Their mass closed down into one twisting body of black lines and buzzing wings at the far side of the shaded room. His panting consolidated into low movements of jaw as Ké stood up, and rushed to find the jug of water near the entrance. She poured its contents into his mouth as he watched the intricate lines in the corner tighten into a body, arching back like a contortionist preparing to walk on its hands and feet.
      The nightmare, the boon, the journey, the day, and final quorum with departing fear.
      Dots flickered around the body stepping towards him, dispersing from its mouth, and dribbling down his chin, as he realised that they had never known separateness. Which it had.
      When it came time for the four legged creature to stand, it did. Curling up from its contorted stance, including Frank’s body in its own, so he was unable to tell who was rising. Himself, or the joint collection of dust and insects.
      His mate, known only as the sound “Ké”, screamed from the base of guts for the ritual to end.
      Holding the dumb gurning foreigner in her arms on the floor, she made the sound of love mixed with chaos, in a single channel to a tomb in the sky. Its blackness listened. Its blueness listened. Its mixed white and read listened in the warm tones of sunset. And said
      “Yes Ké. Although you are high foolish in accepting this other-world man into yours, we accept your cry. We have accepted the winds of your tribe’s breath for all time. And we accept your request now, for your mate to not yet swim with us in the sea of fusillade, as your people, call us.”
      “Thank you…” Ké said, breathless.
      Closing her eyes, wiping away the sweat from Frank’s, and feeling his heart beat again, the echo night replied with mercy in its grace. It beat heavier now. Like that of the drumming she had known as a child, and was more familiar with. The kind that even made waking feel worth it, easy, low low low, the sun has a rattle, the moon has a woman, and can never decide how many eternities he loves her heat.
      Always enough time for thunder in the grace of conversation with elders, who are startled by the dance of foolishness, and thusly, respected in the quietness of listening. Because, this was how Frank’s heart beat now. Shattering up in his chest with a rhythm almost removing his rib-cage. The walls of the hut opened back on themselves, revealing the island once again. Many hands lowered them down, while some also helped to unweave the ties at the corners. Some of the locals took it all seriously, hurrying in with bowls of fresh food and water into the small square of wood, where as, some took it the other way, and rushed in with laughter and celebration.
      Frank knew that humanity was a wave to a passing flock of sound, a passing thump of driven feet and the slow pulp of something going down his throat. Rooty. Green. Although at least the monkeys understood. They wanted to come in and record it all down in their furry smiling teeth, rubber spines, and jumping chirps. The dogs, cats, birds, and clams all opened and shut their teeth as well. As the pink clouds and sun agreed in waring blue moods of reversed grey storm, eating low bites of lightening near the end of a vesseless typhoon, that shouldn’t touch the quiet huts of men and women basking in the rabid hymns of easy fire conversation & smoke, for many worlds yet.

      In the morning it was time to talk. Frank opened his eyes. A soft river of leaves surrounded his head. Ké squeezed his hand impatiently and calmly. As between the two fields of villagers, on either side, there was a path, and the village elder walked towards them. We are all king and queen where our toils turn wheat into body. Reddy yellow brown backed warriors of all genders bowed down, children in the labyrinth of drum, running in and out of the wooing sound of high and low chorus shoulders, adults bowed, beach swept flat, flawless blue sea behind, and groggy stamina coming back.
      Frank felt at ease in their presence. He felt the chaos of connected relay, from his eyes to his heart, dwindle, the longer he stayed silent. Some nights he would try to explain this to his new wife. But, the only thing he ever really noticed in her reply, was how the film on her eyes was made of the things he wished he could say. He explained where he came from, in hand puppets that dispersed on the wall. Then they gripped each other forgetting language.
      Everyone’s tremors were the same in the morning however.
      And Ké signalled that it was time to wake. She did this by lifting the back of her heel up into Frank’s balls.
      “AHHhh… Jesus!”
      “Je-sus” Ké said kicking him again, as he slipped his hand down to catch the back of Ké’s heel. Of course, he gripped it, pulling her across himself. As she also, pushed her heel out from his grip, straddled him, and they wound around deciding which way they would remember it for many hours.
      In the morning they were no longer alone. They were at the entrance to the hut, collected and leaning on each other, whether Frank had finished or-”
      “Hey!” He howled.
      Ké chuckled as Frank was pulled away from her, and only a small bridge of translucency united them. With ease and ferocity, and a sudden lift, they carried him throughout the village, in a spread thrown made of limbs and laughter.
      And as cannibals pluck eye-brows they cheer for a man whos drive runs his body. Raced with paw prints. The same happens to Ké. Mothers whisper words into her ear. Fathers whisper beyond old poems. But Frank knew that it was time to go. As did the crowd carrying him, which even worse than his his own ideas, fucked up the nightmares he had planned, and lowered him to the sand-, sudden and gradually.
      They affected the sun, in spending too long with Ké without food, and the affect of all things conclusive to his feet became apparent, as       Frank lost his mind again. And it was as easy as that, to loose a mind…
      Calm shore in, calm shore out.
      The water from the beach spoke aloud, when he walked it with Ké, telling him to leave, to jump back in, to fuck back off. Frank walked the long beaches of the island with Ké. And around them, the polarised lots of planets, conjoining all mornings with the silent humming beasts, all and many nights, turned their feet into rolling terrapins made from water.
      And it corralled into several shadows, the sun, and they continued to walk the worlds, tribe in tribe, sea in sea. The unmeasured sea sang as they walked. The fibre of the water pulsated with its many lives of cloistered animal, drawing on their hands linked, killing the sighing moon, repelling the log beating tunes of surrounding lovers, daemons below the sleeping leaves, mongrels painting angels, silent power shattering thousands of feet dancing and customising in the darkness.
      Frank gently became insane again, and remembered his life before the island. He believed it more than the hand of his wife, which lead up to the shoulders of a beautiful queen, as she purred without breathing the majestic remains of the galaxy, dribbling as if Pluto is dawn. By the enticement of their stillness, they began to look a each other. Therefore, thereafter, and therebefore, it was time for a genuine marriage of unsigiled grace. The type that ties jungle parts together, in the eyes of mating leviathans, in the loss of despondency from the clouds. And in rain we are summer, and in bones we attach, from the occasion, the defecated reasons to not dance away, and with resolution, they found the synonym of their dance, and death paused for a moment in the quaking surroundings, energy wandered steadily into their hearts, as they saw each other clearly, past the everclay of each others birth, alight, alight, alight, and rising into the island’s tempest.
      Through each other’s shining eyes, they found revenge in the past lives of their kin. For Frank’s mate, for Ké’s wild foreign dog, there was a room inside the wilderness, a hope inside green clouds made of blue azurian red; and as the villagers proved themselves from the bushes, some of them, howled in elation, watching their new gods rise, rushing out half honey-beered snatched and choked, the others, walked slower, as if grimacing about the spectacle, doubting whether the sight of the floating couple was real, or if indeed, they had also drank too much pulp from the rugged moon.
      Frank and Ké did not stand back from the tsunamiing sea however, as this too rose from the bed and spiralled around them, since, it was fine for Frank not to be a native of the Nevernae, fine for Ké to see him as a purple dog, strange for him to see Ké as a bleeding doe that separates dusk from sunset, and charms rage in ways that technology never can, but hey, people make reality, not the other way around. And at these strange times, they say strange things to each other. So by blue lip, white face, he says to a black girl, K! Haha, and they made conversation in the long poem of Sunday. And after that they began spitting at each other like sculptures made of stars, and they found time to say each other’s poem, as they exchanged humanity, between each other, for all time, where only abode has music; and one dancer said this, in the colour of each-

We began the week, and hell. I choked
we only made wine from there
we found ways to translate our hate into morning
pure and ready for the fight &
the way you shower calms me down
i make coffees, break out a smoke, average summer’s pluck
you down from the day of my fury
your underrated calm means more than emotion
we think straight to working the pulse, we haemorrhage
forcing the road to bow in light
the bridge under the ghost of a heron, is where
my casual suit is sharp, your lightening skin pressed
all day the humming bird entrails of tall work mean null
and yet we excel, our comatose heart swaps each breath
managers, managerettes, menageries, and maiming terror;
my tie is a light noose, your skirt a storm
we exchange 30 under the desk for 20, halfling eyes
since our rage is made of professional lust
since we both feel the apocalypse, yet
death has no abode in our charms
death is mood-fodder for our grabs
and I run the minutes like gambles

      And so Ké replied, harvesting the energy of her lover’s bastion, opening her chest as the villagers watched, passing their furore into the belladonna coil of their dance:

Cicada below blue blue remains
of this soil, of this supplanted-recoil
I am your gatherer of deathly journey
the wine stain on your lapel, the lapis, the stench, the den
of lazuli marks that I cut
across you bear my perfume, as nonetheless
one is able to make poison of perfect

      Woah. Was the first word in Frank’s mouth. And so, and a silent smirk was also the first word for Ké after it all. The couple continued down the dusky beach, smiling about why the estate agent had said: Don’t go getting fucked up with the natives.

      “Whad’ya do you think she meant by that Meehi?” Frank asked Ké, and the island asked them.


is Raoul Moat in a boat. His first words were ‘Newky Brown’. As well as being our most prolific writer, René also creates graphic art, paintings and screenplays.

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