My Life in the Bush of Ghosts

Anders Grønlien “Killer in Sunset”, akryl na płótnie, 250×165 cm, 2012. Wystawa “Noul romantism negru / New Black Romanticism”, The National Museum of Art of Romania. Bukareszt 2017


Brian Eno / David Byrne
My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts (1981)

“(…) I stopped under a tree and climbed to the top. I laid down on its branch which had plenty of leaves that covered me as a cloth from the cold of that night and also from the wind which was blowing (…). I woke alert or with fear and when I bent downward and looked at the foot of this tree, there I saw (…) ghosts already surrounding the tree. All of them were waiting for me (…) they put me in a very dark room which was under the ground, as such rooms are very common in the ‚Bush of Ghosts’. After a while they changed me to a blind man and then rubbed my body with their palms which were sharp as sand paper and were slightly scraping me as dulled sand paper. (…) Immediately my eyes opened there I saw about a thousand snakes which almost covered me, although they did not attempt to bite me at all. It was in this doorless room which is in underground I first saw in my life that the biggest and longest among these snakes which was acting as a director for the rest vomited a kind of coloured lights from his mouth on to the floor of this room. These lights shone to every part of the room and also to my eyes, and after all of the snakes saw me clearly through the lights then they disappeared at once with the lights and then the room became dark as before.

“(…) all these ghosts which surrounded me disappeared unnoticed. At last I found myself where several roads meet together, the place was about one-third of a mile distant from their town (…). When it was about eight o’clock in the morning all the ghosts and ghostesses with their children of that town came to me with two sheep and two goats and also with some fowls. Having reached there the first thing they did was that the whole of them surrounded me, then all were singing, beating drums, clapping hands, ringing bells and dancing round me for a few minutes before they killed all the domestic animals which they brought before me and poured the blood of these animals on to my head which ran to the long neck and then into the pitcher in which the rest of my body was. After that the flesh of these animals was cooked and put all near to touch my mouth and I was easily eating it. So all these ghosts were coming every third day and worshipping me there as their god”.

Amos Tutuola On my way to the 9th Town of Ghosts w: My Life in the Bush of Ghosts (1954, fragm.)





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