by Mrs. Rosenkrantz
Above. A single cherry red string hangs in the light. How to weave a thread so thin? The fray a halo. The string hangs loosely. A series of slight ess curves. Esses. Nothing was tied to the bottom. A red so bright it burns and beckons. Come here. Ess.
How did this string come to appear? When string? Who string? Why string? How many colors in the spectrum of DNA? How many red?
Below. The string is not a snake, nor its opposite. The snake is born of egg. The snake is hatched from the egg it has swallowed. The circle is a spiral. The snake is a two-spirit. The egg is too big for its mouth. The snake swallows the egg. The snake swallows a frog. The snake is an egg. The frog is born of snake.
What is a frog to a snake? A snake to an egg? What is a string of?*
Above. Cherry bomb red. A beam of light from the East highlights the hanging string. Tiny flecks of dust form a halo around the string. Flecks form. Fleck forms.
Below. A large iron tank of oil. A furnace. The fire is contained. A basement. Children play here. A small boy takes apart a radio while a snake swallows a frog. These two things are connected. Another boy, his brother, speaks into a long black tube. A third boy plays a cruel trick on the second. The first ignores them both.
Above. Everything is a lie. There is no red string. There is no beam of light. There is no halo, except for the one in the painting of the old woman. Holding a baby, a boy. The halo is hers. The baby eyes the halo as it suckles. The red string hangs outside the window. The window is closed. The light is outside. In the painting, a red string is tied around the old woman’s wrist.
Below. Under the covers. In the dark. In the corner of the room. Below the stairs. Dinosaurs. A record player. Songs that will be recalled a lifetime ago.
Above. As above, so below. As below, so above. A spiral staircase in between. Connecting the dots. Drawing a red line. A shape begins to emerge. A constellation.
The red string burns down.
The wick is snuffed out.
No more light.