Peter Clarke (1929 - )

mixed media
50 x 35cm

I paint my face & my fingernails & henna my hands & feet. But there
are those stupid women who say, "Why don't you sew or embroider? You need
never be bored." I could kill them for their inane remarks.

Johanaan is in the dungeon. From time to time I hear him bellow imprecations
at Herod & this House. He goes on & on. His madness is attractive. He is like a wild
sweaty, muscular beast that I would like to prossess & be possessed by.

That nasty man Herod thinks he can own anything & everything -even me- the way
he owns my mother Herodias. He treats her like a common shit. Serves her right. She's all
blowsy & only the devil knows why she persist in dyeing her hair like a cheap

What Herod wants from me is obvious. But he's so slimy. I must outwit the snake that he is.
The randy old man keeps wanting me to dance for him. He grovels at my feet for my
favours, trying to see beneath my veils. He promises me anything, anything I want if I
will dance for him. When he asks me again I will dance for him. Afterwards I, in turn,
am going to ask for something so simple that I am going to absolutely devastate him.

2005 Michael Stevenson. All rights reserved.