short story
green things rising swept to the sea
madonna picture
looking to the wrong god
my period
she was a wolf
shaving and bras
she runs from us
mother keeps me awake
busy being rootless
fantasy art






I am on a rumbling train - the movement numbs every feeling I have ever known. I am trying to forget my last love, I say to myself. But really, I am trying to forget my first.

All of Europe and its ghosts pass in a smudge of green and brown, a blur. But to all those cars and drivers, all those kids and aunties on bicycles I pass, all those faces a blur, I am a blur. I am just a faceless face on a train that stops their day for a minute, postpones their errands with giant red-and-white striped arms, inconveniences them, interrupts them from their path, before I move on and am forgotten.

Reclining and lounging on my student fare europass seat, I am ironically on a hunt, for my past and my mother's past. At least, that is what I say to anyone who asks.

Call me Eva. I am the first one, the guilty one, the curse. I am named after my grandmother, Evalina. She was a singer. I am a singer too, only I sing through my flute, a regular Pan. I am Eva, the one God threw out of paradise because she was too curious. Eva is impulsive, instinctual, sensitive, hated. To them, Eva is evil.

Adam is the namer of things, the magician. He knows the essence of things. He is their musician, and sings them.

First Eve knows the color of things. She is the painter. She reclines on a couch of moss and sweet grass, wearing the perfume of all the flowered bushes that surround her. Everything she sees is luminous, everything is surrounded with a halo, so there are no deep black outlines, there are no boundaries. To her, everything touches everything else.

In every Adam there is an Eve. In every Eve, an Adam.

She sings too, but not of other things. Eve sings of herself. Her belly full and swollen with her smiling eyes, a golden belly, a green belly. She doesn't sing of separate things because all the green things rising are from herself. She is the rotted trunk with the young green shoots sprouting out, vining around her. She is the forest, the giant canopies, the dry moss, the still pond, the twittering, moving speck. She is the roots that entwine the forest: each hand crossing over the other, every root rotting into another root, so many gnarled fingers. She does not sing of things because she is everything. Everything sings of her.

I collect pictures of the Madonna, hang them up on the wall. I long to become Catholic , but I cannot resign myself to a world of Jesus, a world of loving Jesus. He is a mortal, a man. I cannot resign myself to men dictating my whole life, to a tedious religion, to a religion with no meaning. Mary is an angel. Mary, the Virgin Mary. But I don't care if she is a virgin or not. I don't emulate her barrenness, her purity. To me, it leaves her faceless, and I know, that is only how they want to depict her. She is not really a virgin. She is a loving mother. She has many faces. She is a ravaging thing, a sexual vamp. She is everything and everywhere and everywoman. She is everyone but she loves loving. She is loving me.

Mary stares at me, and I draw her. I try to draw the dreams I have of her. She comes to me, answers me when I pray, alone in my room, the lights off, my sheet up to my chin. Mary is my angel, she stays with me, but sometimes, it is I who forgets she is there. She does not turn her back on me the way Jesus does, the way God does. They have given up on me long ago, because I am a woman, a disagreeable woman. Because I no longer obey their rules, because I no longer have the patience to sit though their emptiness, their arbitrariness, their delusional thirst for power and supreme will.

The trouble is that every woman is Eve. Every woman curious, disobedient, instinctual. Every woman is a part of life, part of the flow, part of the earth. Women, their bodies a pear, heavier on the bottom: they come from the earth, they are built for the earth. God set Eve up. Eve is the second part of Mary, the missing one. Eve is the sexual self, the lover, the instinct, the Earth-keeper. Eve emerges from a garden. She is nature's daughter, her mother's daughter. Mary is her father's daughter, obedient to every word. In Eve's world there are no words. She is not of the word, but something beyond that. When women cannot be part of the earth, they can not be part of themselves.

© 1990 - 2003 Katharina Woodworth

fantasy art