How people keep company: some cradle, others seize, most never notice. I am a thief of my own past. There is an older woman I see almost every day. Her face is a lonely map to home where she sits alone with her life’s work. Somewhere is a child too busy for her calls, forgetting birthdays. Her topography cradles tracks simply laid and easily derailed, breadcrumb trails of hard-lived knowledge searching for a link, a river opening up into the universe, flowing into a sea that meets an ocean that spills through a strait to be carried through the current to a nameless island. We were choked and moulded by this current to want to be apart while we yearn to create some common ground. I am the work of your life. We each agree on an illusion, hiding in company, giving our lives to strangers. Eyes seizing on reflected starlight and joining hands with people who no longer exist. She will continue to do so with kindness, even though she knows most will never notice, smiling as she paddles serenely through glass, as if the dream will never
Arden Fitzroy is a writer-poet, actor, producer, and full-time dandy who believes in experimentation and blurring the boundaries of genre, gender and art forms. Their work is published or forthcoming with Untitled Writing, Stone of Madness Press, UCL Culture, Silhouette Press, and more. They were shortlisted for the London Writers Award in Poetry 2018 and the Creative Future Writers’ Awards 2020, were longlisted for the 2020 Primadonna Prize, and have opened for Saul Williams on the Roundhouse Main Stage. Currently they are Lead Producer on the RISE Collective’s Amplify Podcast, available wherever you get your podcasts. You can follow them on Twitter or Instagram @ArdenFitzroy.
image: “Grand Canyon” by Christy Lorio, a writer and photographer based in New Orleans. Christy’s photography has been seen in Auburn Art Gallery (Los Angeles), Millepiani Exhibition Space (Rome, Italy) and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art (New Orleans) as well as various publications. She was a finalist in New Delta Review’s 2021 Ryan R. Gibbs Photography contest as well as a fellow for Arizona State University’s Desert Nights, Rising Stars Writers Conference. Christy holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of New Orleans and is currently working on her MFA in Studio Art from UNO.