by Tsavo Leone
Day and night he lets the lights burn, afraid of what he might otherwise see.
Constant light is needed, lest the images shift once more. The glow of a full moon or shafts of noonday sun; the glare of a TV in another room: each of these and more might change the painting.
Faces come forth within the trees, tortured and prophetic. Their gaze follows all who pass by, their whispers taunting and vicious. Clouds twist and writhe, contortions wrought upon them from below, images of loved ones and the despised alike.
Each image brings certain knowledge.
Figures might be seen walking the path, familiar yet alien, their details shrouded in every changing brushstrokes as the picture re-paints itself. Nursery rhyme characters, fairy tale images, all twisted out of true, sadistic and malicious.
Three little pigs hound a wolf; Grandma looks on, feasting on Little Red Riding Hood’s finest wears, the Woodsman having felled her with one blow...
The wind can still be heard blowing through the trees, despite the lights burning bright. The clouds still seem to move before the breeze, the trees and bushes still seem to sway. Somewhere in the wooded glen, beyond the image that can be plainly seen, there is a cottage; smoke from the fire in it’s hearth drifts slowly upwards, it’s scent hanging in the hallway above the lights.
And so, day and night, he lets the lights burn, afraid of what he might otherwise see.