Passover Story pt. 4
Thu Apr 14, 2022 15:52

Passover Story pt. 4

-April 14, 2022.

“The worst part about it was that he stole my press.”

Quote from the Monologues of Thutmose, a collection of remarks recorded by the pharaoh’s least favourite scribe.

—I taught that ungrateful brat everything he knew, how to collect the tithes from our many subjects, how to wear his neme properly, the headdress with the flaps on the side, how to wear it with style, not just something that covers your crown, it requires a certain grace, it’s a beautiful thing passed down from generation to generation. What do I get for my trouble? I get no respect. I helped him with his falconry, showed him how to tame an owl—believe me, once you domesticate them they are your best friend for life. I taught him to chisel, not too much, not too little, flake off and shirk here and there without getting caught. I showed him how to drink beer and carve his own name in glyphs and what do I get? Plagues. Pandemics. Disease. Instability in my empire. Shame on him. He brought disgrace to his house and his family. Henceforth, we shall remove any mention of this ingrate and the tribe he pulled out with from the annals of history. It will be like they never existed. Ha! Put that in your shofar and smoke it! Speaking of which, where’s my pipe and tobacco leaves?

—What do you want to know? I’m grieving. For the record, he was a fool. Could barely utter a sentence with that stutter of his. That half-brother, Aaron, did all the talking. They love the mystique of the mysterious Moses. Descended from Royalty. Banished for disobedience. Secretly a Yid. Hears voices. G-d. A single G-d talks to him. Get in line. We’ve got dozens of them. The people love a good comeback story. I’ll tell you one thing, once this Utopian dream of his fails, he’s not coming back here. Moses is over. Done. Finished. We’ve kicked him out of the royal palace, taken away his royal chariots, his royal clothes, his royal servants, his royal concubines, and his royal burial plot. He’s finished in this town…It’s good to be the king.

—I told you, I showed him everything he knows, read to him from the Book of the Dead when he was just a foundling, me being the older brother, mom put me in charge. I dusted off all the ancient mathematics for him, the funeral rites, the secrets of the pyramids, —those are our royal music studios, the best acoustics in the world. We can uncover some serious craziness if we hit the right frequencies. We know the secret tune. Speaking of secrets, I told him all the hidden aspects of the family, even the classified stuff, our monopoly on idols, the alien contacts, the ten planetary pressure points. What was it all for? I don’t know why I even bothered.

—I’m getting tired. It’s been a long day. A lot of running around. Some of our best men have drowned. What do you want to know? Do I take responsibility for this? Sure. I could have gone easier on him. But remember that this was a betrayal. He sided with the Yids over us, after everything we did for him, educating him, clothing him, feeding him. You don’t bite the hand that feeds you like a scaley crocodile. But what goes around comes around…Don’t you worry. The sun seems to rise quickly but it sets slowly. Darkness falls and the night is long and I sense that darkness even as I speak is encircling my lost brother. All for what? All for freedom! Freedom is cheap. Governing is hard. Easy come, easy go. So dip your finger in your wine for them. Say a prayer for them. Pity them who pity us. There is no right or wrong, only thinking makes it so and by thinking it so, we tip the scales in their destined direction.

—Am I afraid? Am I angry? Aren’t we all sometimes? I’ll get over it. I have plenty of work here to keep me occupied. We’ve written this off as a divine punishment for impurity in our bloodlines. We must be more vigilant. Moses will be the last slave child we adopt. As times change and empires wax and wane, we should take this as a learning opportunity. We might even rip a page out of Moses’ book. I like the idea of one G-d to rule them all. Maybe even a Sun-God to rule them all…Ra is all right but I'm thinking we need a human figure to keep the sun upright. Amun-Ra makes our dynasty that much more tight. There are plans to elevate our leadership to demiurgic dimensions and my brain is waving to interstellar vibrations. This Aten and Atenism is heady stuff, heretical even. The priests in Thebes are certain to protest these Amarnan ideas. Alas, too much worrying for one day. I’m famished. Prepare the feast!

—Lastly, there is something perplexing about this whole situation. I mean, there’s talk of miracles and plagues throughout the kingdom. This episode has been a stain on our kingdom and doorposts. I have an uneasy feeling about all this. The stress of the last several weeks has taken a toll on me. Were these strange sightings and ominous events real or were they merely a skillful mirage? Did the threats precipitate the crisis or merely follow it? The words of these Yids have hypnotized me. Their narrative is powerful. This prophecy of theirs haunts me. What if their G-d is as powerful as they claim? What if there is only one? But after all, it’s only words and warnings. Language can’t hurt me. We control language, mould it to our ends, reconstruct the great chain of events to suit our needs, and fix our memories into stone.

--These slimy words coil all over me, whispers that slither like a snake. Chaotic words. Stuff them back in your blasphemous mouth. Take those words back. You belong to me. The air you breathe and your every utterance belongs to me alone. You speak at my expense and behest, remember? I extend these privileges but I can rescind them. Yet that terrible warning remains… “YWVH commands you to let his people go so that they may fulfill their promise and that they may serve him. For Israel is my firstborn son, and if you do not release my firstborn, I will take yours.” My son is dead and mummified. What black arts are these? Apophis. Is this your doing? Say a prayer for me, my enemy. Let future generations remember this and take pity. The hands that carried out death and destruction were moved by a force from within. The hand that hardened my heart came from without.

This ends the remarks of Thutmose, Pharoah of the 18th Dynasty—carved on official tablets upon his return to Egypt from the valley of the Red Sea.

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