Been meaning to finish this. So:
Men, boiler suits and masks – hammers, rope. More and more people screaming. Breaking into the flats, pulling the people out, dragging them. Into the courtyard. Pushing their bodies into the coffins.
I’m watching. I think: oh shit I have to protect my grandmother. Pushing them into coffins and hammering the lids shut with massive iron nails. Up onto my feet, armchair falling over.
One of the teams is near the flat, the leader looks my way
looks right at me
to say: 'that one'
and they set down the hammers
start walking over
walking across the courtyard of coffins
walking through harsh sunlight
sound of screaming is everywhere
but not too fast
an assured, practical stride
four or five of them
I run to the door and somehow it's hanging open. Somehow they're closer than they should be. The first one is just three or four steps away. Blank-faced mask, reaching out.
No time to shut the door. Got to save my grandmother.
I turn and run into the flat, and that's when everything
I mean everything
explodes with wriggling, crawling
there are old people climbing out from everywhere
out from inside the furniture
under the carpet
out from behind the pictures on the wall
climbing out of vases, climbing down out of the lampshades
they have these leering eyes
all of them are naked, they have drooping flesh and liver spots
veins under their skin
purple/black flesh from bad circulation
I run through the lounge, leaping up from the limbs clutching up from the floor, amazed - HORRIFIED! - by this. In the hallway doors are bursting wide, they're falling out in twined masses, piling onto the floor.
I scream. I turn back - the men are stepping inside, the first man is staring at me across the writhing, transformed room. His eyes are made of shining metal.
I don't have a choice, I run into the hall. I have to step on some of them. They moan. They are hard to step on, they're all in motion, churning, it's a sexual thing - OH GOD, they're having SEX with each other, or they're trying to.
The rooms have moved. The whole layout of the flat has changed, I open the door to what should be my grandmother's bedroom, but it's a toilet and two of them are pushed up, rutting against the sink and watching me in the mirror.
I turn - metal eyes at the end of the hall. Climb over more of them, they're moaning now, and here's a side-hall which is free of them, it's empty, then a corner, a small room. A washing machine. A big wooden door. Beside the door, my third grade teacher.
My teacher pulls her top off, revealing large naked breasts.
She points at the door, a gatekeeper from an old, old story.
She says: "Your father is waiting for you."
The panic is gone. A strange silence has settled, it's almost like peace but it's not. A hum of expectancy.
I step up to the door. My teacher's breasts are heavy, pale, round. She smiles.
I open the door. It's a bedroom. Not my grandmother's.
It's too late to save her anyway.
Ornate. A four-poster bed, drapes and tapestries on the walls. Antique furniture. A large gold-coloured statue - an eagle taking flight with something dead in its claws. On a side table, a smaller sculpture of two dogs tearing at each other's throats. The whole place has a feeling of opulence, dread.
Opposite the door is the most important thing - a cheval glass. A full-figure mirror. Ornate golden frame, fashioned into a series of animals eating each other. This has been a recurring image for me, both before and since. Chains of animals, all eating each other. Here, looking at this mirror, I think: this is Nazi stuff. Evil.
I look at the mirror. I guess I must have taken a step forward because she's closed the door behind me. The hum is actually in my ears now, humming and growing louder. The reflection in the mirror is cloudy, I can only vaguely see myself, my own body. The glass is rippling, like water. The glass is on fire. Those invisible flames which shimmer, warp your vision. My reflection is moving, stepping closer.
What did she mean "My father is waiting"? My father?
It isn't my reflection. Something's coming out. Something breaks the surface up high, up at the top - two points, horns. Far apart, more and more of them. And now I can see fingers, emerging to grip the frame, which is on fire.
More and more of the horns, my god they are huge.
And a hairy knee, a leg, a cloven hoof planted onto the carpet, which blackens, scorched.
I'm thinking: MY FATHER?
When this thing comes out, when I see its face, some part of me will be destroyed, utterly. It doesn't matter that it's only a dream. When I see this thing's face, it'll be over.
Felix’s War Diary: 11 November 1918
2 months ago