• Vol. 04
  • Chapter 03
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Butterfly or moth

The sky’s crayon blue. This whole place is painted from a palette of primary colours. The electric wheat fields, the snow capped mountain shards, the gem stone shapes of the clothes hanging out to dry. And the sky, the sky is crayon blue. There is space up here on this flat roof for everyone. There’s space up here that’s enough for even me. The view goes on for miles, interrupted only by the railway track and the train which rattles north-south with its soundtrack “Never stand still, never stand still, never stand still”. The sun ticks its way across the landscape. I watch the silhouettes of veiled women walking, of children playing, of a frail shepherd moving his animals from field to field.
        Sound is absorbed into the emptiness. The beep-beep horn of a moped, the wail of an unhappy child, the thin, snatched phrase of a song as a car speeds by. There is a rope bed covered with a clean white sheet on the other side of the roof. I walk over and lie down, sinking into its strange comfort. It’s been positioned perfectly in partial shade.
        I look up and see the sky even more clearly. A bright white kite floats high across my rectangle of blue. I close my eyes. When I open them again, another kite is floating nearer, translucent and backlit against the sun. Black spots mark its two wing tips. Butterfly or moth? Butterfly or moth? I fall asleep trying to remember.