May 03, 2007

A Very Short Story

Last year I was asked to submit a story for a flash (as I understand it "very short") fiction compendium but the editor didn't like the result. I happened to look at it today when I was failing to do any proper work and I found I was quite fond of it. It's kind of compacted dystopian sci-fi and I think the collision of form and content works pretty well. Anyway, here it is:

Once Upon One

I should have seen it coming. Eventually we were bound to reach a point where everything was disposable. Not just plates, cups, knives, forks, spoons, postpartum pants, nappies, 3D glasses, toilet seat covers, but cashmere-look sweaters, Rolexes, luxury jeeps, microwave ovens, footballs, wigs, books, wedding rings, houses, handcuffs, even cities.

Imagine that if you can, having excavated this message from fossilised landfill in some different, better future. Every object single-use, uni-purposed, the shortness of its existence determined by function. No repetitions, daily life nothing but novelty and constant endings. How long until our lives, objectively already brief enough, became governed identically?

Little time left for detail or, indeed, anything else, brevity being, necessarily, imperative. Only useless information – pointless last testament – bottle-buried, then my own truncated conclusion.

1 comment:

susan said...

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