After I was killed in Iraq last year, I dreamed that I heard that drake quacking once again at the castle-moat.
” What a social surd itÂ´s been, quaak, my last quarter of a century earning a duck-familyÂ´s crud. How finely unartistic and unmusical my fine crust-earning conservatoire years; all for my drakes, the ducks; Â´twas a social desert, Â´twas, an inter-draked dump; the house lacked any normal duck-love in its foyer, yeah, quack, we had yellow-eyed envy in the arty-farty toilets . The shadow of 1945 was cast still over our Duck-PresidentÂ´s music-office . What a fitting successor to the Gestapo torture-chambers ( where they had turned the musical screw in that corner ) was our DuckschuleÂ´s professorsÂ´ aviary lunch-cum-pissoir corner which I had to frequent in them dark quack-eighties. It was a very casino musicale with all poultry birdsÂ´ feathers feathering all musical nests, all vanities and inanities and major-minor turds and performing eejits and composing midgets and duck theorists. No defence, drakes, for such an architectural,atonal, acoustic and aesthetic monstrosity. Yes, a hide-out for Moovietone civil servants of sounding necrophilia. Quick! Quack! Quake! Slake!”
He paddled. He dived! I could hardly believe this splatted castle-moat bilge that drake was moaning out in his filthy moat-water. Slaking his beak he dropped silvery droplets, his water-tones. He drearily draked on:
” So I waddles shyly in to just no waiting reception-committee, – Hey! ” collegiality” is not a duck-word. So I stumbles over the PresidentÂ´s threshold as he was sticking on his most drakish smile . ” IÂ´m sorry, Herr Guest Drake, but I canÂ´t help you out at all with your unfortunate case of Herr CrutchÂ´s Phelt!” sez he.
So I was out at sea on the holy moat-water for the best part of the next twenty five years. Prof. CrutchÂ´s Phelt, get this, had wanted my professorial drakeÂ´s chair for his then unmusical mistress ; her professorial appointment , mine had obviously blocked hers, would have halved the distance ( it was snickered ) from her class-room to his feather bed-room. See? So in retaliation CrutchÂ´s Phelt syphons off all compositional young hope from my teaching-load for the rest of his crutchÂ´s phelty reign at our High Duck-Shed. And to this day he, too, uses our professorsÂ´ eat-corner-cum- pissoir. So it was only then it slowly dawned on this drake, ducks, and hen-eggs : what I treated of in class was of not the slightest interest to that arch-drake nor to the ducklingsÂ´s doctorates ; it was only my teaching load at CrutchÂ´s Phelp Musictone-University that was quantifiable. Which was all that mattered. Quick! Quake! Quack, pay any lip-service to reforming that irrelevant dodo of a Hogs Skool? Yes, there was simply no Disney interest in the pitiable hog-wash weÂ´d dish up to dem young, suffering ducklets .
No colleagues greeted – Disneys donÂ´t do greeting, we do not web-shake. Our Good Chief Duck Architect had wetted his paddle-feet; he made sure that this wasnÂ´t ever, ever, ever going to grow into a real Hochschule; eg. he forgot to plan for it, so we had no drakesÂ´corner where youÂ´d ever have a human intercourse. Let not duckish humanity soften a High Hog SkoolÂ´s Rule of the knife or be knifed for their high table. Do not tink tunes! No sing! No quacked doodle! Quick! We have not a second! Clock up de dying hours! Flap! Quaak! Thus did I, drake, see my drake-decades crawl till IÂ´d be finally pensioning off the water of this castle-moat from both my webbed feet, I swear to Great Poultry . Meanwhile some colleagues, a few loving drakes died ; but some were replaced by Quack Again!”
His moated drakespeak had ended on, for a musician of sorts, his flat note. Sour or surly. I risked a parting : ” But surely there was something, anything at all, golden in your twenty five years at the DucksÂ´Shed? You mean to say you learned nothing? From musical youth ? From young lovely ducks?” But he had already dived . The dark-green moat closed over his brown drake-backside, leaving an unpleasantly grey smudge on the castle-waters. So I went beck to being dead after my own Iraq service….
November 23 2008. Sorry, itÂ´s December 11 next at the Festival Mondain in Bucharest, then December 13 in Kluj, premier by Duo Moderno of my ” Quasi Un Duo” for doublebass and piano.