(x) Days of Photography is a photography/ flash fiction collaboration with Austin Andrews of Disposable Words. This is Day Four.

Pictograms (Austin Andrews)

A man always finds himself in the dark, alone, as usual,
judging the patterns and depths of his own breath, his own life.
He sees and hears and feels that he is alone, with only his body to depend on.
He is probably wearing ill-fitting pants.
Does he  see the cold reflected in face after face after face?
How does he keep the cacophony out?
What can he feel all alone besides the bunching off his ill-fitting pants in awkward places?

An unrequited audience — players — whisper in the wings.
Get an actress; for you do not seem to believe me.
Would you prefer an impersonation? The pleasure of watching an actress play me.
Surely not.
Looking on and losing the pain at the origin of each detail;
each muted word turning into unconscious action — I don’t think I could.
I don’t think you could bear watching me.
What’s that again?
The lights are down but I can still hear out beyond the stage.
Forgive me, that in the speed of my enthusiasm I might get the words wrong.
I have nobody to depend on. And once had nothing to want and nothing missing.
He is no less real to me now, though;
if his name exists on blue or yellow forms; if his search belongs to this department or that.

What would you say if you could hear me? She mumbled a rhythm.
She had better ideas for everybody else.

You can’t talk about one without talking about the other.
And where the other is concerned she speaks for both of them.
Is that what you will say when others ask?
What? What’s that again?
You say nothing yet. At least that I can hear.
He is missing; presumed found by the police.
Can you say something of that, at least?

I’m too tired to go on with possibilities.
You see the face of the woman.
A woman, yes, but not as old as you would imagine.
Not so unfamiliar for me to say:
It is you, to the theatre. It is her, to the wings.
It is me, to my senses. It is us, to the streets.

(to be continued)

Photo Copyright ©2008 Austin Andrews