By Cleo Mikutta
– IV –
Her eyes rest on the pins, there on the wooden floor, sharp, metallic bodies, there on the floor, there, in the plastic box, there, with colorful heads.
Pink, yellow, green, blue, and red.
Light has entered the room, followed by shadow. They spread out all over the floor, become entangled in the eyes of the wood. Thoughtlessly they dive into every abyss they can find.
They trace the fine veins of a leaf, on the stem of a flower. They catch a glimpse of their reflection in a pool of blood.
Light strokes her skin, shadow hides beneath his fingernails.
Pieces of her black hair are strewn all around.
A sea of spiked, half-open chestnut shells. Collapsing stone pillars and a flight of stairs, drowning in fading leaves.
He passes a familiar tree.
Two silhouettes, beneath it. A man and a woman, sleeping, their fingers intertwined.
The woman’s face. Ripples move across the surface of her closed lids. She is hunting images slippery as fish. They writhe in her grasp, escaping the moment she captures them.
A skeletal scaffolding clings to the side of a church tower. The black brass hands of the tower clock stand still at three twenty-one. As she approaches, a third line appears, the thinnest of the three hands. It has come to rest in a place between two seconds.
She crosses the bridge, climbs the fence. The diving board is just on the other side. Standing before the ladder, she takes off her clothes. In the floodlights her body is a bruised, cut-up canvas. Five meters vertical. She ascends the steel steps, until there are none left.
She follows her shadow down to the edge of the diving board. With open eyes, she falls.
Her hair rustles in the plastic bag he has kept hidden from sight since the day on which the clouds were black and the sky was white. In the entrance hall of the main station, the checkered marble floor lets his footsteps ring. He remembers the excitement of the boy, stepping from square to square, set adrift in a daydream.
The texture of her hair feels foreign through the plastic. He is alone on the platform, waiting for the northbound train.
He would reach the ocean just before nightfall. Soon, he would cast her hair into the water. He would let the current pull her strands into the depths. He would bury himself in the sand.
She has descended to a silent place. Floodlit lightwaves roll over her body. Here she sees her scream scatter into bubbles, devoured as they pass through the pool with its surface like skin, by the points of light as they cluster and disperse.
Cleo Mikutta was born in Hamburg in 1991. She grew up in New York City and returned to Germany in 2001. She studied Fine Arts in Amsterdam and made her debut as a writer with Meeting Points, published in A Public Space, 2017.
Image credit: Wassily Kandinsky, “Small Worlds VI” (Kleine Welten VI). Woodcut, 27.3 x 23.2 cm, from a portfolio of twelve prints, six lithographs (including two transferred from woodcuts), four drypoints, and two woodcuts. Berlin: Propyläen-Verlag, 1922. DIGITAL IMAGE © 2018, The Museum of Modern Art/Scala, Florence.