It’s late, and I should be asleeping but instead I am awake and on the couch and writing writing writing. The dull suck of the air conditioner is the only thing I hear behind the metallic tapping of my fingers on the keys. It’s not a steady thrum; close listening reveals undulations in the sound, momentary bursts of greater exhalation that cause the pitch to rise for a beat and then fall back into the steady river of white noise. I picture a large, blue stone head, blind and dumb, with a Japanese kabuki mask frown from which an endless swathe of coarse white linen is drawn.

The blue face in my mind has been abducted by Disney and turned into the Genie’s jovial, second-hand car salesman’s one. Damn them. I’ll turn the material to jade, and distend and draw out the features so that they become vaguely lionesque. Make the jade almost milky green, and polished to such a high degree that it seems coated with a sheen of water. Make the eyes staring and blind, broad and set apart like those of a frog’s, and the mane stylized, wavy but more fit for a playing card depiction than real life.

I am suddenly reminded of Austen’s poem set to The Tempest. Cutting and brilliant and by far my favorite work of his. What was Antonio’s intro piece? That is what I would use as my statement to Disney following my reclamation of my jade head.