(during his visit to Mexico in 1999)



The Pope is there, in front of me, talking to me, on a close-up from the TV screen.

I stop to eat, worried, sitting at a table of the Mexican restaurant.

Behind him the scenery is majestic: his stage is pharaonic, and, under it, hundreds of priests are praying (between the cardinals is clearly visible an alien one, grey style).

Behind me the confusion reigns as usual inside the restaurant: waiters going here and forth, owner and cashier having an argument with the radio crackling at high volume just behind them, clients talking in various languages at the tables; only a pair of couples, the nearest, are watching the TV as I do.

In the Babylon of speeches the Latin of the Pope imposes itself from the TV speakers. I cannot follow properly, my Latin from faraway school time is too old, and definitely not sufficient, but the power of those words, on top of the personal one of the old man, activates my automatic defenses. Fuck! He is spelling an enchantment! Here, just in front of me, perhaps just against mee! He may annihilate me, or subjugate me… I need to do something about, and fast!

The idea to throw against him some powerful Tibetan mantra is not good. I don’t like religions. And it would be his very arena.

But it is indeed urgent to defend myself in some way, because he is going on and on with his utterance!

From some unknown (abdominal?) cells of my body the far memory of these words emerges:  The karatekas, in China, use to emit the pure sounds of vowels…

Without any delay I start:


I don’t care if the two couples may hear me, and… their reactions are favorable, it is looking like they understand my urge; and are honored to assist at this Titan’s clash.


The Pope goes on declaiming in Latin, his anathema is powerful, the sound of his words is able, sometimes, to not even be drowned out, in my very own hears, by the nearly yell coming from my stomach, chest, neck, mouth. While His Holiness goes on declaiming I start with the “i”, and, in the same moment, I see the Pope’s heart illuminated by an intense white light…


Fuck! I think, he has halted at the fourth chakra, the heart chakra, that’s why they are doing so many chatters on pity… I should help him, I have to help him to rise up... to the higher realms of consciousness. I concentrate intensely, I do effort actually, and so, when I start with the “o” the light is already in the middle of his eyebrows:


Fuck! But I’m giving him Power! He’s fooling meee! The High Priest is really tough, he’s actually using my own defenses at his advantage…


Fuck! Like this I’m giving him the control over the mind: may be he will understand more, for the benefit of all… but, what if was always lying?  What if was only a bluff his asking forgiveness for the “mistakes” of the Church: inquisition, persecution of heretics homosexuals Jews, support of the worst dictators, and so on? What if is false his respect for the Spirits of the lands? …just to later annihilate me in the usual way of the old Antichrist of Babylon?


Oh my God! Sure I don’t want to bring him upper, to the Seventh Sky… what if from up there… would he throw a Zeus’s stroke over me?


The Pope directs his gaze into my eyes


and from the TV screen says loudly:

- You forgot the “u”! -.

Rodolfo de Matteis, 4th of January 2003


ArtieRexTRA -> HOME

performance art * video * radio visionoir literature