Strobe Light


[Gonzalo Fernandez]

Strobe Light

A bowl of thumbtacks spilled on my desk

scattering and rolling and shaking.

I had to pick them up.

I reached to the far right corner of my desk

settling around an upright tack

with thumb and index finger of my right hand

already thinking ahead to what my left hand could do.

As my right hand moved to the bowl

to deposit the thumbtack from the far right corner

my left hand reach for an overturned tack

rolling to an upright position.

My fingers flipped the tac to the middle of my palm.

Moving over the mouth of the bowl

my left hand hollowed and released

the tack to gravity. Plink.

I was more confident now.

I directed my hands two at a time.

I saw the two action going on

at the same time. I gave the a rhythm.

Like a heartbeat, which is involuntary.

A man with a soft cotton shirt came into the room.

My eyes followed him in and unbroken gaze.

H walked in an ellipse in front of my desk.

My eyes moved in ellipses

as my hands picked up thumtacks,

many more still to go.

The man began to talk. I comprehended,

I nodded. Like a heartbeat, which is involuntary.

I had to get up all the thumbtacks.

A small boy pulled at my shirt, pushing

between my rhythmic hands. The man kept talkin

and walking. I kept nodding and

comprehending and following him with my eyes

as my mechanical hands picked up the thumbtacks.

The small boy reach inside my shirt

and took my left nipple in his right hand and

twirled it. This was his nipple from birth.

My nipple twirled as I watched the man, eye-

to-eye for greater communication. I knew I

must pick up all the thumbtacks as I

nodded and comprehended,

like a heartbeat, which is involuntary,

before I could stop

the plant on my desk from moaning.

It was crying and withering

from thirst and

it was my

fault, my fault.


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