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My Demetri

May 6, 2009

I’ve been in the process of writing a book, but it may be a total plagiarism of Dostoevsky. Well, maybe it’s not exactly like Dostoevsky, but hopefully I’ve made the allusion pretty clear with a character named Demetri who shares similarly rapturous mood swings as the other Demetri. However, as this work develops I am finding that my Demetri is becoming more and more autonomous of myself and the characters that influence him.

My Demetri is a character who wakes up one morning with a head full of dreams. As he wanders through his empty house he is suddenly surprised by joy. Here is an excerpt from the first chapter (a work in progress):

Conversations with Demetri (Working Title)

He palmed his mobile phone as it vibrated, signaling the hour that life was set to begin. He hit the snooze button three or four times with quickness, subconsciously knowing –to the moment—when the phone would writhe again in his alert, but disinterested, hand. There were few moments that carried so much peace for Demetri as the moments directly proceeding his offsetting the alarm. Seconds later he would fall into a deep and dreamless sleep, as if following a pulsing rhythm of waking and unconsciousness. The sleep brought satisfaction to Demetri, the same satisfaction, he imagined, that one would experience in perfect isolation. Waking, however, brought with consciousness a rising sense of reality, a clarity that –though temporary—seemed another world he knew deeply, briefly, but experienced regularly enough to call the strange place “a separate home.”

Three steps to the stove, two steps to the refrigerator, two steps back to the oak cabinet to retrieve his tall white mug. As he handled the stained mug Demetri suddenly remembered that he had dreamed of a Samovar. He imagined the brown-stained mug to be an extension of his hand, no less valuable than any other appendage. As he slowly poured the just-below-boiling water over the black tea he watched with increasing interest as the dark corrupting rust leaked from the bag into the innocent water. Demetri let the bag sit in the hot stained water longer than usual, so he added some extra milk to mellow the bitter drink.

He stopped in the vestibule and stared at the empty dog food bowl –he looked at the fresh bag of kibble, and without notice his heart broke. He lost control, let his sanity rush into a type of euphoria that danced recklessly with both tears and laughter. He began to weep in mad ecstasy. Laughing and wiping tears from his eyes, he felt so full that he could not help spilling over for the slightest of reasons.

“There is mercy in the world.” he thought rapturously, still wiping the tears away from his scrunched eyes. He grabbed at his chest as if hoping his ribs would expand, just to contain his very self…

Demetri is a rare breed, someone so full of joy and yet categorized as “mad” even by himself! He is pressed on by an invisible urge, something that pulls him towards other souls in search of an “I Thou” relationship.

Sometimes I feel like Demetri, and other times I feel entirely disbelieving and fearful. I am creating my Demetri because I want to get to know him better. I want to converse with him and be surprised. Let me know what you think of this character: is he too unrealistic? Does he intrigue or alienate you?

It is fascinating to watch my Demetri become a newer, freer Demetri.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. christine permalink
    May 7, 2009 11:05 pm

    hey nuke. I found when reading your excerpts a great sense of profound imagery. Although everyone may not be able to relate to Demetri, I believe readers will be able to understand him. Keep up the good work =)

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