Speechless the Magazine

 To render. Be rendered. Awestruck. Awesome.
A magazine of poetry and related arts straight from L.A.



Philomene Long


The artist/architect/soon-to-be-a-lover said, “I feel like I’m in a Woody Allen movie!” after five shows of rum and cream—over which was sprinkled nutmeg in small blue glasses that matched his blue light fine art photography piece he had just sold for $15,000 and the Japanese style screen which was lit from behind with pale blue light in his just-about-to-be-leaving second story apartment/gallery over the Pacific in Venice to go on the road for his art “to see what my eye responds to” in Northern California, New York, Barcelona, Paris, Rome, Israel for two or three months, and he was saying: “I am not stepping off onto ground, but into the ether.”

There was much blue light in that room as well as an employee—a young German man named “Wolfgang” there to help package the enormous 70-feet wide and gorgeous blue art piece. “It is painting with light,” I had said to him.

Here are the essential details. I should mention one twice—the unthinkably fine five glasses of rum in those pale blue glasses after which Wolfgang said he had to bum a cigarette and I said that I had one so he smoked it out on the veranda while the artist/architect put his arm around me and this time I did not shrug or pull away as I had to so many others—perhaps…perhaps…perhaps…forget the perhaps, I let him and then Wolfgang returned and said he needed another cigarette which I offered. But for some reason, this time Wolfgang went downstairs and outside to smoke it at which time the artist/architect/very-soon-to-be-a-lover began kissing me and we moved towards the low-to-the-floor Japanese-style black futon bed next to the Japanese-style screen.

Over the bed there was another 70 feet fine art photograph work—this one was red and called “Fire Bird” (after Stravinsky) about which I said, “I’ll take it!” until he told me it was selling also for $15,000 possibly next week—so instead we lay down upon the bed beneath it and had the beginnings of passion. This is the moment when he turned on the many tiny blue light bulbs behind that screen which filled the room with a blue radiance and it is at the point he asked if he could…and I replied: “Do you have a condom?”

So he left the room and returned with a condom, saying “I have just one” and immediately somehow it disappeared on the bed—herein began the conflict with amazing images of him on his hands and knees in silhouette—almost primeval, hunting through all that blue light—it was both “stepping on to the ground” and “into the ether” his trying to find a small pale condom on a large black futon which exclaiming, “There years!” (that is how long it had taken for me to come to this bed) and I was saying “Wolfgang is getting close to the end of that cigarette by now—even though it is a long one—a Marlboro Light 100!” That is when, in quiet desperation, the artist/architect/closer-to-becoming-lover said, “I feel like I’m in a Woody Allen movie!” then politely asked if he could turn me to the side and see if I was lying upon it, which he did, very gentlemanly.

I felt like a patient in a hospital and thought of T.S. Eliot’s line “Let us go then, you and I when the evening is spread out against the sky like a patient etherized upon a table” and he was patting the bed beneath me with no condom within sight or touch and I said, “Maybe I have one at the bottom of my purse because I never go anywhere without a condom.” I was thinking of the nuns who had taught me never to go anywhere without a book and I had added, “Never go anywhere without a book and a condom.” And the artist/architect/now-almost-a-lover asked “Is it an EXTRA LARGE?” at which point I pulled my hand out from deep within my purse, raised it high up then flopped it down to the side of the bed—and here is where the story comes to its climax—my palm landed on the floor right on top of the EXTRA LARGE condom!

Here is the resolution. Then I said, “I KNOW Wolfgang (a perfect name for the situation) must be nearing the end of that cigarette!” and the artist/architect, the moment-before-he-became-lover shouted, “I’VE LOCKED WOLFGANG OUT!” and then we laughed and made love and then made love and laughed simultaneously. And afterwards, we just laughed.


Speechless Spring 2007
Copyright © 2007 Published by
Tebot Bach