Martin Heavisides is the author of eight full length plays, one, Empty Bowl, published in The Linnet's Wings and given a live reading by Living Theatre in New York; two one acts and a good number of ten minute plays; short stories, flash fiction, poetry, which has been published in Sein Und Werden, The Linnet's Wings, FRiGG, Mad Hatter's Review, Pure Slush, Journal of Compressed Creativity, among others. A novella or interconnected flash fiction cycle, Undermind. He is currently near completion of his first full length novel (the first he's prepared to see into print at least), Freeze that Moment of Slaughter. He posts at irregular intervals at a blog, The Evitable ("It's political! It's personal! It's coherent as often as not!") He is attempting to reconstruct a regular column of film study, The Moving Picture Writes. http://theevitable.blogspot.com

Storyteller

Storyteller
©


In one mirror I look like an old man, an ancient drooler if you want the truth; one pinch beneath the fur gives the lie to this, unless I've found the one patch of skin on my near-carcass that doesn't sag above muscles gone permanently feeble.

In another I look like a meercat alertly perched on its hind legs, stretched to full height, peering about happily; I could swear I have more body than that, and if I touch around the eye sockets, they don't seem to protrude nearly so much out of my face, but how can I know with certainty?

In a third my horn is being methodically sawed off by men eager for the gold to be gained by grinding it down to a fine powder famed for its remedicinal and aphrodisiac properties (I, tethered by hemp corded thick as cable, with chains for good measure, am unable to resist). Though I can see no-one about me, I begin to feel rough hands, eager, an unbearable pain in my forehead simultaneous with a gushing stream that ought to blind me but instead stripes my vision with red barlike streaks. I can only make out shapes, a figure wrapped in fur, a prodigious heaving bosom, less than that and progressively less in a series of receding mirrors which might just possibly multiply without end.

In the near distance I can make out lights and colours as bright as a sitcom set, and the further they recede the more vividly and ecstatically they shimmer; the gap closes in my forehead; perhaps I'm happy in those reflections and considering the number of them, possibly I'm ahead on the percentages. In one mirror I'm an old crone with an apple and a pocket reflector; in another I'm wondering why I'm trying so hard to win a tennis match when I should be losing at speed in order to pursue a murderer who's trying to frame me for his crimes; in a third I wear my rue with a difference. A long succession of mirrors recede. . .

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Martin Heavisides © 2016

Read Martin's poem: Moments of Truth #7

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