1 The constraints: 1) No more than
one hour. 2) No more than 20 lines.
The result ? Genius or Not.


15 August 2010

By Ben Rogers | 2010 August 15

Two of them in the same space.  Sips of hot limeflower.  Scrape of metal chair legs on parquet floor.  Plate stacked on plate.  She coughs.  He looks out of the window as a large truck, small block of white, passes in the distance.  What they are carrying.  Flour, furniture, liquid nitrogen.  There are no books, no newspapers.   Treading down gravel paths with a memory of being lost in a market holding an orange, her father unable to see her.  The stench of morning earth. Somewhere in the past someone etched the word ‘hope’ on the trunk of an oak.  A hope for hope, possibly.  Low cloud blocks the sky.  Misted grass.  Watching slow footfall, imagining each others’ imagining.  A frog jumps into shadow.  The longer it is, the more in the mind words sound insubstantial.  They have both played inaudible music in their mind.  Paint peels on the wall to the left of the sink.  A drop in temperature from yesterday.  He has the image of being stuck in a lift stuck in his head, neither one floor or the other.  Sliver of light, thick as a pamphlet.  Tap dripping onto a stainless steel fork.  A framed sheet of blank paper.  Her hands wrapped around a plastic alarm clock, the red second hand stuttering as she winds back time.  The condensation on the mirror, making it harder to see.   No words, gesticulations or eye contact.  The clunk of ceramic mug on formica tabletop.  Today, a different angle on the same building by sitting in a different spot.  It could be that they are thinking the same thing.  The swallowed hum of a jazz tune about a city he can’t recall the name of.  He sneezes.  Imagining a headline of a teen knifed after a spontaneous argument.  Where the larger branch has been severed it looks like there’s a face in the wood.  She collects the sleeves of her cardigan over her fists, not wanting to go inside.  When her father finds her, she throws the orange at him.  He walks out of the lift as if nothing has happened.  Both are speechless.

Silence, Memory

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