Underground Forum: Both walking and falling.

Both walking and falling.

Text: Sam Packer.

Photo: Sop Rodchenvko

A woman finds herself suspended in a road. To some she is walking home, to others she is falling through space, or falling home. Road markings look like the levels of a building from which she falls, or up which she soars. Hair aloft rushing in the wind, her shadow is trickery, sorcery that roots her on earth, to suit that impression, she is walking home.

The space holds her, like she holds this space. Confident, time stops, traffic stops, drivers are unarmed. This vision, so normal at first, so mundane, shocks them to a halt as they look closer. Brakes screech all around her, though no horns sound. The earth has tipped and toppled her into a spotlight. The earth has ripped and upended like a tremor rippling the things we see as rigid, fixed and stable, turning them to liquid. Her trolley slithers across the tarmac with the sound of running water, smoothing the hard edges of the city. Her plastic bag rustles like a snare drum, her feet deliberate and rhythmic beat out the steps of the street, heel-toe, heel-toe, all backed by the sweeping boom of the trolley. An accidental one-man band. Those hard drivers, camionetas, taxistas, rushing with furrowed brow, stopping for no one, not even offering a glance to the most dramatic of street performers. Even they are softened. All is paused, as they connect beyond their tin-shell, the tinny sounds of their radios are muted, swimming in this liquid city.

Scrubbed out lines resemble a ladder hurriedly removed. Like a decorator quickly removing his trace, fleeing from a half-finished job. The outline of this ladder is a memory of a more ordered past; once we used to climb, once we used to know the hurdles ahead we knew the goals to surmount. Now we float, we drift in a space, yet we are still framed by this past, these leftovers of order. A past like a fading music sheet on which this figure dances like a note.

Sam Packer.

Working on a project to reduce food waste in UK retailers. Part-time gardener and grower.

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© 2020 by Sop Rodchenvko

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

All text by Sop Rodchenvko are reviewed and copy-edited by Gosia Polanska (Mojek).

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