Sometimes the voices in your head aren’t telling you the whole truth. Sometimes even your drugs and lovers lie. ‘The best policy’ might well be the one you’ve taken out on someone else’s life. Nightmares and comic strips, old spouses’ tales: fake fur is more honest than blood on snow. Authenticity, New York City, Felicity Kendal are all urban myths. When I was a teacher the really smart kids saw through ‘Hard work brings rewards.’ But then, I’ve always told lies for a living: dole forms, poetry, I once wrote a column for a Murdoch paper. When General Millán-Astray cried ‘Long live death!’ he was sincere. By their fruits … Today a few of these fruits: skulls, a finger, maybe a thousand fragments are ripe of the quarter million who were testament to the general’s truth to himself. They are being picked and by their DNA we know them. Millán-Astray’s wife only revealed after their wedding her wish to remain a virgin. ‘Death to intelligence!’ was his other slogan. We still use ‘clever’ as an insult.
Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places.
Subscribe | Renew | Donate November 9–16 to support progressive literary culture for another year – and for the chance to win magnificent prizes!