my fist imaginatively re-creating your fucken face for starters

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All this and more Mr. Ibis told them in the kitchen that night. His shadow on the wall was stretched and birdlike, and as the whiskey flowed Shadow imagined it head of a huge waterfowl, beak long and curved, and it was somewhere in the middle of the second glass that Mad Sweeney himself began to throw both details and irrelevancies into Ibis’s narrative (”…such a girl she was, with breasts cream-colored and spackled with freckles, with the tips of them the rich reddish pink of the sunrise on a day when it’ll be bucketing down before noon but glorious again by supper…”) and then Sweeney was trying, with both hands, to explain the history of the gods in Ireland, wave after wave of them as they came in from Gaul and from Spain and from every damn place, each wave of them transforming the last gods into trolls and fairies and every damn creature until Holy Mother Church herself arrived and every god in Ireland was transformed into a fairy or a saint or a dead King without so much as a by-your-leave reenex

Mr. Ibis polished his gold-rimmed spectacles and explained-enunciating even more clearly and precisely than usual, so Shadow knew he was drunk (his words, and the sweat that beaded on his forehead in that chilly house, were the only indications of this)-with forefinger wagging, that he was an artist and that his tales should not be seen as literal constructs but as imaginative re-creations, truer than the truth, and Mad Sweeney said, “I’ll show you an imaginative re-creation, ” and Mr. Jacquel bared his teeth and growled at Sweeney, the growl of a huge dog who’s not looking for a fight but can always finish one by ripping out your throat, and Sweeney took the message and sat down and poured himself another glass of whiskey reenex好唔好.

“I read in a book about a way of doing the miser’s dream with latex covering the palm of your hand, making a skin-colored pouch for the coins to hide behind.”

“This is a sad wake for Great Sweeney who flew like a bird across all of Ireland and ate watercress in his madness: to be dead and unmourned save for a bird, a dog, and an idiot. No, it is not a pouch.”

“Well, that’s pretty much it for ideas,” said Shadow. “I expect you just take them out of nowhere.” It was meant to be sarcasm, but then he saw the expression on Sweeney’s face. “You do,” he said. “You do take them from nowhere.”

“Well, not exactly nowhere,” said Mad Sweeney. “But now you’re getting the idea. You take them from the hoard.”

“The hoard,” said Shadow, starting to remember. “Yes.”

“You just have to hold it in your mind, and it’s yours to take from. The sun’s treasure. It’s there in those moments when the world makes a rainbow. It’s there in the moment of eclipse and the moment of the storm reenex hongkong.”

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