- The thirty second set of photography, artwork, poetry and fiction is below. Set thirty one can be found on the Photography, Artwork, Poetry and Fiction page.
- On November 13, 2017, the 900th blog post was posted to M. Sakran's blog of and about poetry and poetry related things.
- M. Sakran has had a short story published by Prairie Times Magazine. The story is on page 11 of the November 2017 issue. You can read the current issue here: current issue.
Current photography, artwork, poetry and fiction:
with all that surrounds,
unseen by eyes,
A gathering of stones,
a gathering of fibers,
a gathering of food,
a gathering of something.
A coat of gray and brown,
blending with all that surrounds,
to the hidden place,
and the gathering.
A nest of sticks,
a nest of leaves,
a sense of calm,
among the gathering.
A Short Story
He walked about the city streets, on the east side, past the industrial buildings, but before the shipyards. He moved with steps that seemed to have purpose and didn't pause or look about. In the movement, of the people, and the trucks, and the sound of machinery, he went along carrying his backpack. No one noticed, as he moved along. He seemed to be just part of the place.
As he went, although his eyes were forward, he was always looking. After the years, it seemed natural for him. He noticed dumpsters. He noticed debris that wasn't trash. He noticed city cars. He noticed things that were abandoned. People often have moments where they are surprised that they noticed things. His moments had no surprise.
Like in a boat, moving down a river, he hardly stopped as he gathered. He looked for cans. He knew where they would be. He could almost sense the density. He looked for gloves and caps and shoes. The things that wore. The things that were noticed inside when they wore. He looked for food. He kept himself to a standard. It wasn't of self-consciousness, but of dignity. He looked for tools. Not with a present need, but in case of a future one.
In his clothes of gray and brown, he seemed like part of the concrete walls he moved past. He blended in among the metal and stone and little weeds that grew without dirt.
As he gathered, he moved in an unseen circuit. It was a path unspoken in his mind that went from where he was, out to the world, and back again. It was rational in his mind, but without predictability. He started, went out, gathered and returned.
There was a fence, with a gate locked with a chain that was too long and pad lock. Behind it were storage units once used as businesses, all in a row. All were quiet. They had been since the sign came down. One had auto parts, another appliances, a third was always empty, and a forth had machine parts.
Around the corner, hidden from the street, behind a fence with an easement on the other side, was a unit marked 124. It had held furniture and upholstery. It seemed a natural place.
Opening the door, only just enough, slipping inside with the backpack, closing it behind him, and putting the metal bar. He was home.
Light came in through ventilation tubes and dimly lit the space around. A torn couch on one side, a pile of cloth, of different colors and patterns, laid out in a square, a table made of pallet parts, a large pile of items and two metal drums by the wall.
Inside the drums were more. More cans, more gloves, caps and shoes, more tools without a purpose. The contents of the bag were added to the gathering and then he sat down to rest.
His dinner was funnel cake. Apparently not cooked enough for someone's taste. It was clean and still on the plate and had been on top of the pile.
As the room grew dark, with night approaching, he turned on a battery powered lantern that he had gotten after a hurricane when it was on sale. The center of the room seemed to glow with an orange light and around the walls it seemed a grayish yellow.
In his mind, because he didn't want to speak aloud, he went through an inventory of his gatherings. It was time to organize the clothes. He thought of what would go together and what would last the same length of time. He thought of his cans, and the three miles to the recycling depot. He needed to dress as well as he could and go on a Thursday morning to avoid the patrols that came by. He thought of his tools. There was almost a set. He wondered if he could be a handyman. He wondered if he could portray an image well enough.
As his mind roamed toward the future, a sense of present filled him inside. He thought of the hawks. The others who roamed about and preyed upon those seen as small and weak. He felt the knife in his pocket and the chain wrapped around his ankle under his sock.
His mind shifted more, as he tried to shake the thoughts away, and he thought of the next day's gathering.
He planned his route almost unconsciously and tried to think where the resources would be. He envisioned where to go, what to get and where to avoid. He almost lived the day in his mind.
He thought of the camps, beyond the highway. They had a gathering. They might be gathering. He thought of going. He thought of trading. He thought of hawks. He thought not to go.
He then got up, turned off his lantern, went to the pile of cloth, and went to sleep.
The day dawned, and in the low glow of light he went through his routine to get ready to leave. Before the world was awake with noise, he had closed his door and walked through the gate.
He gathered that day. The gathering was good. There were copper coils in debris by a construction site. There was also a glove that might match one he had. Past the convenience store, he found a bag filled with past dated drinks. He met someone, he thought he knew, and gave them a token, from the shelter. In return, he got a knife the person said they had found.
At a store, he got inside, without the ties, throwing him out. He filled a bag, with bathroom soap, and put a pile of napkins in his bag.
By a pier he had some food, because despite the protest of others, someone bought him a sandwich from a truck.
He even found, and adjustable wrench, just on the road. The spiral still turned.
He moved in his path, the one from his mind and made his circuit. Toward mid-afternoon, he was at the gate.
As he stood by the gate, he noticed the chain was cut and on the ground. Despite the logic, he hoped someone had broken in.
He went inside and saw the doors. One open, two open, three open, four open. Clear concrete inside.
Another door, another clear concrete. Another door, another clear concrete. Then to door 124.
He had known.
He wondered who reported.
Standing there, his life gone, he sensed the gathering. They had gathered. A company, a city, a group with a goal. They had gathered.
Cleaning, revitalization, removal, restoration, other words for the pressing down on life.
He imagined the satisfaction the gathering had given. Somewhere, someone boasted. Somewhere, someone relaxed. Somewhere, someone progressed. Somewhere, someone had their life, un-gathered.
Standing, with his bag of gatherings, he looked at the result of gathering. His was benign. Theirs's was malignant.
Into a dumpster or a truck or dragged out with a machine, his life was gathered. He stood for a moment and turned away. He walked toward the fence and the easement.
He looked down the easement. It seemed to go as far as he could see. He climbed the fence, gathered his senses, and walked away.