January 2006 /Volume Seven / Issue One
Ian L. Lamb Hrydziuszko
Hang-ups

Received hang-up telephone call from hospital today, which means theyíve wheeled her back up to the fifth floor, with the key-code doors like bad sci-fi, but with that grade-school carpet tightly packed rug that if pulled in one spot would unravel the length of the whole floor, and thereís tile or wood, or bone underneath, and all there is to hang onto is a ball of frizzy thread, like a cheap wig. There is no way to tell that the call mustíve originated from the payphone across from the mini-cafeteria with glass walls so that everyone has to eat under the protection of surveillance. Perhaps standing is a shortcoming, maybe solid ground is a cage. But I know that the distance from the front desk where her name isnít in the computer to the elevator and up is just longer than the stop watch in my chest will go. That the awkward glance shared by everyone who gets off on the same floor cuts almost as close as the wrist. And the car-ride home is much too full of thinking I would like to go back to that carpet, pull up the whole thing till floor is bare, wrap it in a giant ball, take it to a very secret place and burn it.

A beacon for living memories.
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