Salvatore Difalco: “Fireflies”


You squat in the shadows, watching the movement of shadowy truncated legs. Where are they going? Glue seeping out between planks of hardboard lends the room a ribbed, skeletal quality suggestive of a giant body. The structure breathes. You can hear it breathing. And it sweats — behold the ghostly salt stains. Ambiguous in the smooth, creamy light pouring in from a small side window, only your jeweled hairnet gives any sign of your presence, the little glints and flashes when you move your head. When you move your head my eyes follow. Where are the legs going? They seem arbitrary, even nonsensical at first glance, but then again they carry a measure of menace. Shoes and boots clopping across the uneven floor, the conspiratorial whispers, the smell of spent candles — such effects cause you to recoil, to make yourself smaller, and more remote. And yet I want so much to talk to you, to look you in the eyes — what colour are they? — and speak my truth. I believe we share a vibration, a sensibility. I see us together on a davenport in a parlor filled with sunlight, sipping gold-flecked liqueur and chitchatting. We hear a train whistle in the distance and glance at each other, smiling. Then I offer you De Chirico bananas that you say create disquiet. I agree. Nevertheless they transport the eater. Peel one and see. Peel one and see how the darkly painted walls create at once a sense of enclosure and infinitude. When you move your head I think of fireflies. Can you be persuaded to come out from the shadows? I imagine you effortless, of spiraling grace, wearing a hairnet and delicate gold bracelets. Don’t be alarmed. I am only here to watch. That is to say, in a sense I’m only here to watch. I could say more, but I won’t now. The legs stomp on, unsentimentally. They are headed for the other dream where the other you watches the other me.

Salvatore Difalco‘s work has appeared in a number of print and online formats. He lives in Toronto.

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