They’d sat with her long enough now that each time her breathing stopped they simply waited. And each time it stopped it kicked in again. With a gurgle and a splutter and a struggle like Sisyphus. She was as small as a kitten. They’d snatched her a name in a moment, for fear that a more considered one might come too late. Nothing more could be done for her. Deanne and Quan in a shared haze—their ordinary worlds contracted to this. Through another night of stopping and reviving and stopping again until at last the stopping was all and long minutes passed. They held hands in the silence. They tried to look each other in the face but it was too hard. Too hard. Then from nowhere a cough. Another wheezing breath. A small hand moving towards them as if it knew.
Published by Richard Holt
A writer from Melbourne, Richard maintains a number of blogs exploring very short fiction and text-based art practices. His stories and poems have been published in both mainstream and alternative journals and collections. He is also a visual artist and was co-founder of both Platform Artists Group and zine store, Sticky. He continues to publish very short fiction and conduct microfiction workshops for practicing writers, students and others. He has created numerous text-based installations and artworks for public spaces, including at Federation Square, Melbourne and in conjunction with the 2017, Newcastle Writers Festival. View all posts by Richard Holt