are comforting, they're so full. I set the table once again. The bright food sits between us waiting to be eaten. A shaft of sunlight pierces your water glass, the molecules dancing like fairies. If we pause too long, consider it too closely, it will ruin, the food growing cold, the vegetables turning brown, the three-egg omelet becoming leather. Then something or other (it's so hard to predict) will grow a beautiful blue-green mold (not ugly like the fungus on that bread - a ratty, beardlike fungus) or smell rank as week old garbage broken out of incubating green bags. A new race will walk out of the microbes: little men with luminescent blue hairs (each hair having a creeping life of its own) if only you could see the crawling within crawling under the microscope!

What would happen if I forgot to set the table or we forgot to eat the food I set on the table? My days

are so much the same: a time warp to try things out. I could not set and set the table, practice not doing and doing. Not eating and eating, the meal not getting and getting cold depending on how you look at it. And what would happen? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. (It's this nothing at the inside of days so full on the outside I'm talking about.)

If you were sucked into a black hole you'd be stretched to the height of a skyscraper

the width of a cotton thread (You would not know this was happening: a time warp. You'd just know, then not know like slipping into sleep or falling out of consciousness, the light gone out to see the shadow of pain over your shoulder. And without a body, who could say you are dead? You would not exist.)

I ask you: How do you write about nothing while it crystallizes brilliant green, staining the porcelain? While it draws strange lines around your eyes and mouth that tell you how you've been smiling or frowning these short years when you catch yourself looking sideways in a mirror, strategically placed in a public building? While your tooth crumples on a stone in the salad you've washed and prepared and consumed unsuspecting the stone inside the folded leaf?

Gillian Harding-Russell
Surrey, B.C

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