Citation: slsb. "Red Lafcadio in Chains: An Experience with Methoxetamine (exp116622)". Erowid.org. Sep 18, 2022. erowid.org/exp/116622
My third and latest experience with methoxetamine can, I think, be neatly divided into three parts: the first 'plateau'; the brief lull; and finally the second 'plateau', brought about by a re-dose.
At half-past eight on Saturday 11th February I ingested a capsule containing thirty-five milligrams. I did so on an empty stomach. I felt reasonably calm and about as uplifted as it is possible for me to be. Death and the Maiden played; Los looked down at me from his place on the wall; my room was bathed in a warm and lambent glow.
About thirty-five minutes in, I felt the curious trickling in my legs. I received that familiar caress. It was as though my bottom half was atrophying away to nothing. All of a sudden, my head felt light, if not entirely weightless, and my perception took on a rather dreamlike quality. I soon felt what I perceived to be my self being gently peeled away from my physical body. This sensation was particularly noticeable on my face and in my head; it either began or ended there.
I soon felt what I perceived to be my self being gently peeled away from my physical body. This sensation was particularly noticeable on my face and in my head; it either began or ended there.
Rills of sweat dripped now and again from my armpits. I remember thinking at the time - and with no little excitement - that the walls of the prison were about to be breached. Ahead of me the felt-surfaced noticeboard played host to a fine red drizzle - an augury, I thought, of things to come.
Forty-five minutes in I found myself watching a video on YouTube. I would not normally stoop to mention such minutiae, but this time the video was everything. It seems silly and almost painfully unfair to describe - and thereby to cheapen - the video's content, but I feel strongly that I must. "Terpene" by Carbon Based Lifeforms was the track, and accompanying it was a refulgent time-lapse sequence of various scenes from nature.
On reflection it wouldn't be right to say I was merely watching the video, or even that I sat utterly enthralled by its beauty. Rather I was actually there, on the boundless plains, the mesas of New Mexico. I literally drew my feet across the water of the cove. I didnít just peregrinate with stars and galaxies across the firmament; I was them, and felt as though I were drifting accordingly. I was in all places, and at the same time I was all places. And yet simultaneously I saw others in these places; I felt their presence; in some strange sense I was with them, but they were epochs away and I knew this! In any case the world of sobriety just did not exist; I had transcended the four walls within which I was actually situated; I was adamant later that my experience had in fact taken place outside them. There was, quite simply, infinitude - an unspeakable infinitude. All the while, the music was not music. It was not recognised as such. Rather, it was circumambient - it was the ambience! I am shaking my head now. It is all I can do. I cannot ask words - mere words - to do any more. Some things simply lie beyond their ambit.
Every so often, I would turn to observe myself in the mirror. Whenever I did, I was still and virtually insensate for what seemed an awfully long time. I looked gaunt and inhuman. Indeed I came to feel that the boundary between life and death had become blurred, and that I was in fact gambolling about that boundary, going from one side to the other and back again. It was odd. I always seem to have an acute awareness and anticipation of death under the influence of this substance. At some point I got up and tried to walk. I felt rather like a marionette: very mechanical, capable only of small, shuffling steps. At any rate, this part of the experience can be said to have concluded when I dropped the second of two capsules, eighty-three minutes after ingesting the first.
There was then a brief lull. I went for a wander and contemplated going outside. I held a book of Tzara in my hand, and electronic music played in my ears. My ability to walk was more or less restored for a time. I experienced a mild desire for social interaction, but finding no prospect of such I returned to my room. I couldnít concentrate on reading. I ate three custard creams but found them too sickly if not actually revolting. I found myself becoming anxious as to whether the effects of the second capsule would come. I made the decision to strip off, turn out the lights and get into bed. It was there that I arrived at the second 'plateau'.
On my bed I felt as though I was in the process of gradually descending a spiral staircase, or rather, lying supine on one. The peeling-away of self seemed to occur again. At times I felt like I was being gently spun around. At others, I was conscious of being on a bed, or at least on some kind of bed-like structure. During these moments, the structure - and of course I with it - seemed to tilt slowly forwards until almost vertical; I could not or did not move my body. The structure was always at a declining angle, to the effect that I was looking down on my surroundings from on high and from a position farther back and to the right than would have ordinarily been the case. These surroundings never occurred to me at any time to be my room. All of these changes in motion and perspective became secondary, however, to the 'waking dream' or prolonged hallucination that played out before my open eyes.
Far ahead of me was a gleaming white and manifestly Grecian colonnade. (In actual fact, its columns were bars of light created by the interaction of streetlamps outside with the blinds that cut across my window.) At any rate, I presume I must have 'entered' the building beyond the facade. The bars of the latter then metamorphosed into the arms of a figure who became central to the rest of the vision. His name, inexplicably, was Lafcadio. His face was blood-red and so I called him 'red Lafcadio'. I cannot recall much more of his appearance. He was bearded and perhaps long-haired; there was something slightly inhuman about him; there was something of Delacroix's Sardanapalus in him. He seemed kingly and virile; he was with women, I think. After a time it became apparent that red Lafcadio was chained. Very significantly, or so it seemed, I recognised him to be my father. I remember descending into some dungeon, wherein this Lafcadio seemed first to examine me and then to accept me. To what purpose I do not know. He seemed somehow to embody the idea of life-as-art, but at the same time he cut a vaguely tragic figure. In any case, the bars of light soon changed again, this time into scrolls, which Lafcadio seemed to present to me. Later, the blood-red visage darkened; it then ceased to be a face. Lafcadio was dead, or at least irretrievably gone.
Again, the music throughout this vision had not been perceived as such; it was just a natural part of the atmosphere and in fact its gravity seemed to colour everything. My body continued to feel weak and insignificant; the awareness and anticipation of death and harm both heightened. I thought of various things and of various people and to how surreal it was that I had ever known them. I knew when this second 'plateau' had finished, for I descended to a normal height, and the ordinary distance between myself and the wall before me was restored. I found getting to sleep to be as difficult as it was desirable. Motion was still unsteady. Certainly by about two o'clock in the morning, the MXE was well on its way out. Oddly, sexual thoughts and images began to creep into my mind at this time. In the end, I slept reasonably well.
I woke up with virtually no ill-effects to speak of. In fact, I felt quite serene. All in all, it was a fascinating experience, so serious and wordless and orange! The idea of the drug experience as (at bottom) an artistic one was strongly reinforced. My only grievance is that I didn't think too much about important premeditated themes; instead, these became rather irrelevant, which leaves me in the awkward position of feeling as though I ought to extrapolate from points of departure which were never really there. But I am still very much in awe. "Real life" seems terribly mundane by comparison, but just about tolerably so. I have one capsule left, and a single, burning question: when will they make this illegal?
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