Three figures of ambiguous sexuality are astride, the camera moving backwards. As the camera pans to the left, one realizes they are not astride, but in actuality are situated in lateral distances through a trick of camera,

the very animated TOMORROW (dapper in a long coattail tuxedo and pencil thin mustache, like a maitre’d, eyes twinkling always with excitement of novelty juxtaposed with the upper lip trembling fearfully at the unknown, but wearing a smile that is joyously illuminating the prospect of something happening, oh, isn’t it happening!) leads the stride,

TODAY (well tuxedoed and plump, well fed, with red cheeks and the expectant gait of someone on the verge of dreaming and remembering) takes up the middle,

and YESTERDAY (an ambivalent mix of resentment and contentment scarring his youthful appearance with the tributaries of old age which seem to interchange in random intervals, the youthful face suddenly fissuring into bitter age then flashing into bright acceptance of Time passed) dawdles at the back of the pack as if on tottering legs of creaking bone.

TOMORROW: (walking white gloved hand on brow, camera right close-up) O!
YESTERDAY: (receding camera left): So it begins… the gradual distancing.
TODAY: (running a hand through hair, still walking) Eye on the horizon, I tread towards Tomorrow.
YESTERDAY: (shrinking, bitter voice tinny and echoey) Good-by, good-by!
TODAY: (performing a jig) The rosy, cosy future, blushing sweet petal smells falling onto my passage.
TOMORROW: (extending a hand) Time’s a strange thing.
YESTERDAY: No! (He reaches across the gulf, which we find is longer than it seemed, and grasps the coat tails of TODAY)

TODAY and TOMORROW engage in a tango, whirl and twirl in a backdrop of galaxies that reel with violent light revealing themselves to be blistering holes on overheated celluloid. YESTERDAY, stretched about, is flung about, still gripping at TODAY, like an arm of a galaxy.

TOMORROW: Orange blooms and foul droppings. One man’s trash is another man’s wealth.
TODAY: It’s always the same.
TOMORROW: It’s always—
TODAY: Time to tango!

Mournfully, filled with muffled lament, steadily growing louder, the patter of feet on the quickly burning cosmos. Roses are falling from no sky in particular, their red petals unfolding from in hot galactic centers to burst apart, dusting in the cold cold void: it doesn’t stop; is a petal as any other petal?

YESTERDAY: No, please stop. Stop, please.
TODAY: What was that? Did you hear something?

Stars burn their gases and there is life and death. Stories galore.

TOMORROW: Yoicks! Never mind that. What excitement!
YESTERDAY: Hey, it’s me…
TODAY: Whoo!
YESTERDAY: I’m here. Hmph. The very thought.
TOMORROW: Round and round we go in a merry go round of you and me!
YESTERDAY: (feebly) And me? (angrily) Mark my words. The past always catches up with you!

So they spin forever and ever, the Matter of matters always caught in the vortex of their dance, always trying to come to grips with the state of things.


4 responses to “TIME’S SOLILOQUY

  1. This is brilliant and masterful – and thoroughly entertaining. Publication and award-worthy and one of the best pieces I’ve read in quite some time. This has the classic elegance of timeless writing (interesting that I say timeless, huh?). I can see this included in school literature books and on bedside tables to be read by elderly gentlemen before they retire for the evening.

    The voices of TODAY, TOMORROW, and YESTERDAY are flawless. The descriptions are flawless. The dialogue is flawless.

    “The past always catches up with you!” = superb.

    I want to offer constructive criticism but I find I cannot. I would not change a thing. I love the words you’ve chose. SUBMIT THIS everywhere you can and every chance you get. Then buy me a beer with the winnings for my encouragement.

  2. Thank you. I’m glad you think so. This is one of my personal favorites. This was written very quickly and on a whim. Seems most of my better appreciated stories were written like that. Makes me consider the divide between concerted effort and divine inspiration.

    I’m not too sure about submissions because many sites expect your piece to be not published anywhere, including blogs. And what about multiple submissions? What’s the guideline on that? Do you have any experience in that? Any willing advice would be appreciated (and not expected).

  3. I wondered the same thing, especially since much of my work is “published” on my blog. In my experience (which is admittedly, not a lot), personal websites and blogs do not count as publication. However, publication on someone else’s blog does count as publication. You might be asked to remove the submitted piece from a personal site if it were to get accepted, which is understandable. There are, of course, differing rules and opinions, but thus far I have been fortunate in finding contests that do not count personal sites against authors.

    If I find out more, I will let you know.

  4. As far as multiple submissions, that is usually mentioned in the rules to the contest. 90% of the contests to which I’ve submitted have allowed multiple submissions on the condition that if a piece is accepted elsewhere, you let them know.

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