The girl as creature, her wings the silk of kimono sleeves, Madame Butterfly is destined to die like an exotic specimen tacked to the wall when the white man first discovers her and then abandons her.
The audience lusts for an "Oriental tragedy," especially if she is young, especially if she is docile, extra docile, like an Asian, especially, and especially if the passion overtakes her.
Yellow thing as passion on the cross. Yellow thing thrusts the blade into her belly, her lips part over Puccini’s staff, her suicide equated to orgasm. Arms flung like the cross. On the cross.
The audience, moved to tears.
Columns for lunalunamagazine.com