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I got home to his picture and it was glass and had my thumb press against it and it was glass hand brushing against the face and it was glass and the other parts of his and it was glass naked body thinking and it was glass meat dinners and it was glass couch sex and it was glass television and it was glass and how we slept nicely when and it was glass but the doorbell rang and it was glass opened the front door with no shoes on and it was glass walked out of the front door with no shoes on and it was glass I screamed his name on the stairway and it was glass came back and it was glass jerked off and it was glass got home to his picture and it was glass first cut—

Big round mirror, make it seem never-ending; above the sink, where else—sink in. Except no walls. Except no split: big round mirror hangs above the sink. Not a bathroom. Never a bathroom. A room, perhaps. A room that is a long, continuous motion (make it seem never-ending), a room that no walls split. A space called a room although it changes shape. How relaxed it feels—to see light hit a head from the side, hard. And lie. Say, they lie on a mattress. On the floor. A mattress on the floor—never a bedroom. A mattress on the floor, where else. No place to hide. That is to say, a room that is a long, continuous motion. A room that no walls split—and which, much like any room, retained its desire for some rupture, to take place, an affirmation: there is a mattress—this imagined affirmation that is dirty white, barely any stitching. Unbearable. The difficulty entailed. Being so close to the floor, as they were, and pretending to get up, this single piece of foam, make it seem never-ending. The difficulty of the floor itself, as it spread itself out without difficulty, no bed sheets. That is to say, the floor spreads itself out at ease, and here lies the difficulty. An affirmation: they lie on a mattress. An affirmation: if one were to shit and wipe himself the other would watch, unless, of course, the other turns his back. The other never turns his back. Another: I watch the one who watches the one who shits and wipes himself. This emergency zone. A room that no walls split. No place to hide: Allan, being named as he was, for name’s sake, merely a wish for repetition. Namely, to repeat the name of something never there, never, say, a bathroom. Allan imagines a bathroom, never a bathroom. Pretending to get up and getting up at the same time, here lies the difficulty. To lock himself up. The wish to repeat the seclusion which is merely a possibility of his condition, being named as he was. Allan wishes he could lock himself up. He imagines this bathroom, never there, the name of something never there. Big round mirror is the same, so much would be otherwise, otherwise than this: big round mirror with a wooden frame hangs above the sink, merely a possibility of his condition. Such as the feats of imagination that are imagined as this: tiles—which are clean and white, porcelain. ‘It’s bright by the time I wake up,’ so much otherwise, the tiles, there. In hospitals, butcher shops, and imaginary bathrooms. Never a bathroom. Allan thinks of himself, repeats himself, an exhalation, condensation on imaginary tiles. ‘Allan thinks of himself locking a door from the inside.’ For he did imagine a door, so as to repeat himself on the other side of the door, merely a possibility. Another: ‘Allan is alone in the bathroom.’ For instance, on his knees, brutally. If the floor were to be covered in tiles. Not there, where else—sink in. ‘Allen watches Allan pissing.’ Allen, being named as he was, for name’s sake, another wish for repetition of himself and the other, i.e. Allan, who is repeated in Allen’s name except for that vowel. It got away with murder. As it is to be expected of someone who has just pretended to get up. Allen, this repetition, watches Allan—i.e. Allan, who is sitting down with his denim trousers around his ankles. To have something to hide, say, the morning shakes that could leave you in bed for as long as you can take being in bed for. Allen wakes up to his image reflected in the big round mirror with a wooden frame. He spits blood into the sink. YOU GIVE ME FEVER. Allan imagines himself, for instance, on his knees. Wiping blood from imaginary tiles—which are clean and white, porcelain. ‘Allen rinses his mouth.’

A person or persons unknown. SUCH AS: bang. That’s what it was, and there they were—let there be light, and let the light find its way through the glass. It hits, dead on, from the side. And if not from the side they turn so as to have one side bright and the other dark, to be FLESHED out, and be whole—a lie. They are flat and miserable. Headshots of well-groomed men gesturing towards an alien form of chastity. Episodes of brutal, sickening violence, over the course of four days, followed a less glamorous calling: sight and smell of ruptures. It tries to cut through—the wound as structure. Open. And let forth. If I’m going to be honest and I really want to I have to speak of unbearable things, to speak of the unbearable itself and watch you hatch: if LOVE were to be pictured as a plane, it would not be without recesses, that is, depressions that both evade and make up its topography: navel; volcano; cigarette lighter in a car; power sockets; crown of a hat; shower drain; moon craters; plug hole; keyhole; valleys; inverted nipples; inflatable mouthpiece; black hole; water in a swimming pool lacking the amount of water displaced when something hits it from above; egg tray; head of a screw; blowhole; open windows in high rise buildings; nostrils; letter box; lilies; cavities. To disclose that sickness which is of no referent, that self-consumption of terms, without capitals. The ridiculousness of an interiority which, for having no other than itself, cannot unravel itself out of the position of its own image. Always a recurrence—of what it thinks of itself as, of its self-appropriation, its laying itself out. And, as such, affirming itself as empty gesture, with nothing behind this affirmation other than the wanting of affirmation itself. The imagining of one long, continuous motion at first. Then a small kind of inconsistency. It doesn’t interrupt the first long, continuous motion but overlaps it. A slight wrinkle. Keeping a light on, faith itself, a monochrome minute. Folds, ripples away, leaves. Hoping for an infinite exhalation. Belongs to the winds and the seabirds. And lights and. A second inconsistency, this time around almost a counter-motion. As if somewhere there is a wall from which exhalation bounces and a small part of it returns, strong enough to provoke the appearance of indentations. And lights and. Keeping a light on: an undetectable source of light that allows the discerning of a long, continuous motion, as well as small inconsistencies that overlap a long, continuous motion. To unwind. Sounds as good as it looks. A layer of skin that is see-through, polystyrene, glass, spit. The comings and goings of small inconsistencies will eventually establish a sense of rhythm. The elegant geometry of anatomized sculptures. This rhythm. So true on the outskirts. It strains the openness with wrinkles, folds, and indentations. So much seems to have happened. But truthfully nothing much has happened. So much seems to have happened. What happened. A series of cuts in a series of non-existent objects. For instance: I know it is strange / strange / I know it is strange when it starts / when you start / when you start to hear me / you are / thinking / it doesn’t sound quite right / I know / this is an uncomfortable moment for you / I’ve just started / and you are tired of the way I speak / I’m sorry / I’m sorry for what I’ve said / you know / this is an uncomfortable moment for you / it doesn’t sound quite the same / you know / when was it again / the last time / you heard me speak / the last time / I couldn’t bear / listening / to you saying how much you miss me / and how awful it was / that I was so far away / when was it again / that I stopped calling you / but we are here now / and I’ve just started / how can we remain here / when you start to hear me. Go home and change passwords. Delete passwords. Go home. Allan says: Allen. Would you say. Wouldn’t you say. I would say so. So did. Go home.


 ‘TREATMENT #2 is excerpted from Bridget’s debut novel, Treatment.

The book is available for pre-order here.

Operating on the peripheries of a pathological discourse, Treatment penetrates the interstices of modern queer consciousness to medicate a multiheaded body of work. With no cure in sight, the text moves from violence, cowboys, iconography, illness and image to the death of Yves Klein and a fear of dentistry. Bridget’s reflections pose a dissection of novelistic cliché that attends to the repressed remnants of a queer romance. Played out in an interpersonal run of vignettes or “treatments,” rather than any death of the novel Treatment propositions a mischievous and travestying performance anchored in putrefaction. A serious play with the decay of forms, Treatment is a rendered reading of our ability to talk through the process of degradation and an ironized analysis of the desire to write it down.

In Bridget’s “mouth-theatre” sit Allan and Allen—two precarious, spectral characters set against an eerie backdrop of clinical isolation. Framed by a nameless narrator, these mirrored figures undergo forty text-treatments across four artificially generated days that survey their feelings of angst, adulation and disorientation against the slow tick of a clock. A mash-up of love story, pornography, art criticism, literary appropriation, and essayistic meditation, Treatment pushes an anatomical body to its limits in a parodic portrayal of a mouth on the hunt for a tongue and its teeth.

Treatment will launch at Burley Fisher Books, London, on August 2nd (see here for details). The event will feature a reading of an unpublished text by the author, and the book will be available for purchase on the night for the first time.

Adrian BRIDGET is a writer and publisher. In recent years he has taught at the Royal Academy of Art, The Hague, and had his work read and performed in the UK and The Netherlands. Bridget is the author of the collection TEXTS THAT SHOULDN’T BE READ OUT LOUD (three excerpts from which can be read on Hotel—see here). He lives and works in London.


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Partner to a press called Tenement, Hotel is a publications series for new approaches to fiction, non fiction & poetry & features work from established & emerging talent. Hotel provides the space for experimental reflection on literature’s status as art & cultural mediator. 

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