“The world of DRY GOODS is luxury: doeskins, vestings, all wool tweeds. Colored cambrics, printed cashmeres and fancy Earlston ginghams. Velvets. All that soft wadding. I imagine it’s Johnson’s natural habitat, a cradle filled with fluffy silk pillows. He sought out these rank and fuck-it muddy pastures, the shit I showed him. He was just a student of misery. He had this idea that there was something like grace and victory to be found in smiting your good fortune, choosing the worst. In answering what he would do with his life say to follow the most putrid path, to ruin his life. See, he was all kind and mete when I met him that night in the snow. By Spain he wasn’t impressed by anything. Spat on whores in Seville and thought himself worldly, that moron. And later shed tears on the ship to me, speaking what I thought at the time were really heart wrung philosophies. Life words. And I awoke for him, always, to listen. To me it felt like more than conversation. But I don’t think he ever had much respect. I was like a heavy bleached cottoned that would hold a lot and show much of what he let spill. A vanity. But by that time I was already drunk on him. And I told him how it felt to wear the cloak of his shit. It felt good, I said. It felt better than drunk, I’d tell him. He said he knew what I meant. He’d cry, do you understand what I’m saying? It was black serge and grey and pale pink silk scarves like that, near like that, alone together squatted down out of the wind, in the mud, drunk and tired and unwatched and me with my head on my knees and Johnson’s hands in my hair, warm and near and together like that like bridge and tide and roof and blinded by sunlight and swaddled, me swaddled in love for him like a wolf in blankets like fine grey merinos, drunk as brothers. Like pale brown satinets. Like royal blue flannel and orleans, alpaca blankets.
"Otherwise I feel at home in MERCHANDIZE: white beans, fleece and corn. Simply put, without Johnson I’m just mess pork, sugar, tallow oil, cannel coal and rye. And always Superior Irish Whiskey, ten casks, just received via Rio Grande, for sale by Russel & Tilson. A bed, a window, floor, walls and little table. The ink from the paper turns my hands grey. Like shadow rubbing off on me. ‘The Concert on Christmas Evening’ lifted backwardedly off across my wrist.”