The Robes of Aloneness

Lisa asked me to lie until the experience became memory. I said that yes I would try, but I may fail to reach back and move the truth.

                                                       * * *

It is a summer evening in Sydney, a Tuesday in November, and I am watching someone mine their own reflection in a giant pane of glass. They are lining themselves up, assessing angles and light, their arm outstretched, balancing a little glowing phone at just the right height to capture their face as it tapers into digital oblivion.

I am in a gymnasium that has swallowed me; I have entered its Cetacean mouth. The warehouse lights above buzz mechanically, adding to the noise from the ceiling’s speakers. There is no stillness here, no balance. I feel the seams of the thing inside me stretching the leather of my skin. Each breath is an act of refuge for the air it contains.

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