Sunday, July 6, 2008

A cardboard box. That is towards the front.

Two men walk in. What’s that puddle doing there? one asks.

Simple, the other replies, a man has hanged himself.

Both look up to discover that a man is indeed dangling from the rafters.

There is a birdcage to the side. In it sits a porcelain vase. Two purple flowers stick out of it.

A month ago somebody ate a meal here. They didn’t enjoy it.

Fortune has not been kind to this place. That is what a widow passing by says to her son who is visiting her from across the state. He nods in assent, though he in fact knows nothing at all of the place.

Just in case, says a man in gloves, as he hands another pair of gloves to a woman in a red velvet swing. Just in case. She takes the gloves hesitantly and slips them over her dry hands. Thank you doctor, she says playfully, knowing that he is in fact not a doctor.

There is a cupboard that doesn’t appear to have been opened in several days. Also a glass rests on the table but is empty. There is a table.

From now on I don’t think we should see each other anymore, she says to him. Why not? She has already left.

People have been arriving steadily. They admire or abhor, then go along.

I have known a dozen such instances, someone says.

The rope is cut and a splash is heard over the thud. Someone chuckles.

If I hadn’t seen her go out I don’t think I would have known anyone was there, one person explains.

A fine collection, asserts the man in the pince-nez. A fine collection indeed. It is unclear what he is referring to.

Profane, profane, whispers someone.

In several weeks two people very much in love will move into the place now being emptied of its various things.

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