Hello?

By Laura Witz

 

Hello.

Hello!

HELLO!!

Are you there?

What are you looking at? Can I see? Can you tell me? Can you tell me what you’re looking for?

You’re trapped in a box, surrounded by a square, looking at a circle. Does that bother you? It bothers me. I don’t want to see you like that. You look sad. So just turn and look at me and we can work it out. We can see together?

No? Oh. Oh well. Ok well I’ll just stand here then shall I? In my place. It’s my place to wonder at your place. Is that it? Did you ever think about that as you selfishly absorbed yourself in your games, your shapes, your otherworldly atmosphere?

Without you I’m just me you see, peering in, peering on. Can you imagine how that feels? Yes I suppose you can of course. It’s you. It’s me. See how much we have in common. LOOK AT ME!

I wish you’d look at me.

Come to think of it, maybe you can’t see me. Am I the future and you the past?

I’m going over there. I’m speaking to that man. He looks friendlier than you.

He wouldn’t speak to me either.

Can I tell you a story? I know that you’re the one with the tale to tell but let me, just this once, use you for my story. Anyway you won’t tell me about you so maybe I should tell you about you. It’s just a story though. It’s not real.

There once was a group of people. They were happy, content. Really rather naive if you think about it, but I digress. They lived and played together and whilst some might have seen something wrong with their simple pleasures and their simple rules, they were quite content. And contentedness should never be scorned.

Then something happened. A rip opened up in their world, a large tear, and they saw something, something they never wanted see. It was too much, too vast, too unclear for anybody to really know. Suddenly, the naivety was gone. And they couldn’t go back. The group fell apart, fell into pieces, some on their own, some in small groups, all looking, wondering and dreaming of what lay beyond. They stared and stared at the strange views, the skies, the shapes and the images.

Two men tried, they tried to look away from the vastness, they dragged themselves away, determined to go back to a lost world, a world of contentedness and other good things. They couldn’t remember exactly what those good things had been but they remembered the feeling. Pulling away they already felt better, they stopped, dragged themselves back and looked down.

But when they looked down they were caught as well, they were stuck. You see it wasn’t just the vastness and the depth that drew them in, it was the promise in the small things, the tears were everywhere. Nothing was clear, nothing was simple, everything held a promise now, an empty sullen tantalising promise.

The two men were stuck. They stared at the things, and slowly, slowly they forgot about the past. They forgot there was a world without a tear and they began to see the beauty in the torn shards and pieces. They knew the others were still there too, looking. And slowly this knowledge began to develop into a new kind of disparate group.

What do you think?

I knew you wouldn’t like it? But really, if you don’t like it you should tell me yourself. It’s not going anywhere you know. You can look away.

Ok, all right, I don’t actually know that for sure. But really what are you learning? Do you really know anything more than me and how long have you been there? Isn’t it time to look at something new? Wouldn’t this direction be stranger now? Wouldn’t we mirror each other?

One thing I want to know. Are you looking at a square or a circle? Do you see the edges or are those for me. Do you see outside the shape or do you see only the shape. Or is the shape for me? What do you see?

WHO ARE YOU?

Just kidding. I knew that wouldn’t work.

Look, I’m not sure this is working out. I’m not sure you really want me to be here. I feel like I’m the only one invested in this. I suppose it’s not really your fault. You’re just being you.

I think I might leave.

I came back. I still want to know.

If I lean in more will you give me a clue? This is close. I might get told off for this. And it’s your fault. You look different up close. Not worse, just different.

Oh crap, security. I’d best be off. Good chat!

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