Their Days Are Numbered is a new year-long project authored by the collective Entropy community. It is a collaborative online novel written by the Entropy community on a weekly basis. A different author will write the next “chapter” each week, to be posted every Tuesday, following the previous post from the previous week, and following a very limited set of guidelines (that each author has one week to write the next piece after the previous week’s installment goes up, that installments should range between 150-1500 words, and that pieces should somehow incorporate a real-life occurrence, current event, news item, or other happening from that week).
Follow the entire “novel” here: Their Days Are Numbered.
The thirty-third installment is presented this week by Joléne M. Bouchon.
Monotony is a hard habit to break. Though nothing familiar remains, the custom clings. Things I used to do: Sweep and resweep. Mop and remop. Wash and wash and wash again. And again. Why, if the product cannot be preserved, must the process be so damned … the same? WHY, I ASK!
But who’s here to answer? The nightflowers.
I look at things this way. This travel northward is by turns trudging and momentous. Step after step is the same, though the scenery switches. The motion’s repetitive. Still, I’m getting somewhere.
The thing is, I like to keep with the narrative. Create some continuous arc. Who am I to break style? It takes guts. That I don’t have. But, what the fuck why not? Who the hell else is here to say?
I want something to happen. Some dialogue. Some action.
“What do you want to do?”
“I dunno. What do you want to do?”
Wait. I DO, DAMMIT!
I want to apply efforts that last. Sweep and mop once and the floor gleams on. To infinity. And on. Wouldn’t that be nice?
An old habit, hard to break.
Truth be told, I don’t miss all the stuff. But there are some things I do. I lament the loss of little things, functions with power. Like placing a comma. Such a small mark, capable of making meaning.
When is he going to get here? / Wen, is he going to get here?
I’m waiting for my friend Wen to arrive. / I’m waiting for my friend, Wen, to arrive.
There’s only one.
I must admit, though: I’m getting somewhere. Monotony and momentum. North into the nightflowers.
Jolène M. Bouchon eats food and writes about it and otherwise gets paid to make words work. A native child of New Orleans who spent a few formative decades in New York, she now lives in Austin, which is currently doing its best imitation of the surface of the sun. (She likes it.) See more of her writing, puppets, videos, and other creative-type endeavors at jolenebouchon.com.