• Vol. 03
  • Chapter 10
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And the nothing was living and moist

We had reached the nothing, and the nothing was living and moist.

To conjure up Lispector, to snatch at the other’s hand, to imagine what was moist and what, instead, was drowned underneath. The once-living, the lost. How can a water so blue, a liquid glass that never lies, conceal all of those bodies inside; for whom did those fingertips reach? Only to find, a rush of sea-grass, silver once it has dried.

A sound so slight, a husk of rice cracked open in the wind. The mirto has stained our teeth, so, drunk and hot, each sound can only be a shiver. Still, we scream – just look at the colour of this water, how it shines.

We fetch the words, smooth pale stones cast upon the sand, catching small rays onto which we cling. Wild gesticulations, swimming toward each other as though the tide, curving against the shore, can only deliver us to another pair of feet. T holds up her camera, right up, to her face, she wants to grab it all – time sliding through her fingers, like trousers turning to liquid and she cannot pull them on – what else could we do now?

Long harpoons tied to a yellow string, red balloons wilting, the only sign – we are underwater, we are searching. Sea urchins leave us with speckled fingernails and K unfurls the sail, at which point it can only be a metaphor for how we feel – overripe, greedy – flung against the wind, our bodies burnt, both thirsty and quenched.


And the nothing was living and moist

In reality, we are not on the boat but instead its pastiche. That privilege could never afford us, not here, not in this gunmetal sea. We have travelled to confront again, this turquoise, its electricity, within our reach – but never to grasp, fully, in which to sink our teeth.

A glance to the shore, and we can see where people like us belong, in the shadows, hiding – not from the sun, but for the grace and welcome of a tree. Pine leaks its oil into the breeze and a hand cups slowly along one ear; out here, memories come in waves – brilliant but for a moment, rushing to foam, and I wonder if, in decades time, we will find sea glass here – each piece, encasing an eye.