Planet of the Apes: 3
"It doesn't look like her."
They think I'm sleeping.
"Her skin looks like the colour of the curtains."
It's true, when people have been in hospital for a long time they start to absorb the colours of their room as if by osmosis. The white of the bedsheets, the pale pastels of the walls, the insipid peach of the curtains. The carpet fibres leach slowly into my skin. My hair on the pillow seeps into the cotton. Melting back to the clay in which it was made.
The whisperer's pick up the photograph beside my bed. The glossy sheen of the image is a sharp contrast to my desiccated insect body. I like pretending I'm asleep. I'm so weak it's easy to fool them. You hear all kinds of things about yourself that you didn't know.
"It's a calculated act of aggression."
I lie still, breathing shallow.
"Her mother's worn down to the bone."
I keep my eyes closed.
"She used to be so pretty."
I blow hard through my lips. Hovering on the edges of consciousness. There is silence in the room.
I begin to breathe softly again.
|© Copyright 2002 Wes Lee & Trout.
|This issue of Trout is sponsored in part by UNESCO.