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Triple-Tap Happy

The view from the last window

By Salomé SaffiriPublished 2 years ago 2 min read
Triple-Tap Happy
Photo by Yann Allegre on Unsplash

"The outside world was unknown to her, but she could see a glimpse of it through the window in his room." from Mother's diary

Frames. I need frames to contain the meanings within. I need frames to define the edges of what is allowed in the picture: A barn, a family, a dog. A tree is outside the frame, it didn't make the cut for lack of importance. However, I know that there is a treasure buried under that tree, and I think, that makes the tree important. I would slide the frame over it, instead, cut out the barn, or the dog, maybe.

I often wonder what the world outside is like. Mother is a photographer. She told me once, that she caught a sparrow mid-flight, a very sharp image, there, on the eights frame, in her camera. Frame - here's that word again.

I asked for a frame for Thursday. I was born on Thursday, but Mother has lost the date. So we had once decided to remark my birth every Thursday around the snowfall time. But then, we both enjoy celebrating it too much to only do it once per year. Every Thursday is a Birthday, and I asked for a frame.

Mother dresses me. A sweater upon sweater, bulky pants over leggings. I don't like being touched and she finds soft clothes to dress me. She pulls my arm through the sleeve of the coat. What is her facial expression? She stops, looks me in the eye and taps the picture three times on smiley face chart. She is happy. She is happy three times.

Border. Order. Limitation.

Sequence. Categorization.

System. Rules and regulations

Are her life.

Poem by Mother.

Kids mind is organized this way, and there is no one to ask "Why?" anymore. She just IS like that, and I am not. She asked to see for herself, what the world was like. With her own eyes. The great, the big and overwhelming, for her little heart. We've tried before on one of the Thursdays. The steam pipes above us hissed, the metal creaked. The howling of life was too unbearable, but she tries and it makes me happy. Triple-tap happy. I know of a perfect place to show to Kid. A place that's a riddle: Open, yet contained. Dangerous and safe, old and new, familiar and unknown.

By Jason Blackeye on Unsplash

When I take the headphones off the ringing stops. I open my eyes. It is snowing. The labyrinth of underground passages are behind Mother and I. Silence. A special, glassy silence, light and crisp, like the snow. It takes me, coats me better than a blanket or two sweaters. Even the footsteps sound like "Hush-hush". I hear Mothers words, floating and falling gently like the snowflakes, some of them melt and fade, before they can reach me. She says: "..Father.." "Used to be his house"

I see a small whirlpool of snow dancing on the floor by our feet. A snow whirlpool dances in my heart. The snowflakes of Mothers voice gently land on my shoulder.

I point to my laminated smiley face chart. "Happy-Sad-Happy-Sad". Mother nods. "Me too" she says and points to the window frame, encased in the remnants of the brick wall. It draws me in, defining the edges of the endless, open, flowing, changing. It grounds me and I see the barn, the tree. And we are the family on the outside of the frame. Tap-happy. Tap-tap.

fact or fiction

About the Creator

Salomé Saffiri

Writing - is my purpose. I feel elated when my thoughts assume shapes, and turn into Timberwolves, running through the snowbound planes of fresh paper, leaving the black ink of their paw prints behind.

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    Salomé SaffiriWritten by Salomé Saffiri

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