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Monday, November 07, 2005

Outside and In

The small orchestra seems to echo through my head. The drip of a tap somewhere from inside the house. The quiet classical music in the lounge room. I hear the footsteps pervading the silent mid-afternoon street. A dog barks, and outside, a mother yells for her son from the increasing darkness of the lawn next door. The phone rings quietly down stairs, but it gets missed as the microwave dings for attention. I pick up the phone a few minutes later, and find my aunt’s voice coming through, having a conversation with the anonymous configured voice of the machine.

The kettle boils into the kitchen, unstoppably, and I walk back in to settle it. Outside the window I see the dog, tail high, trotting the backyard, dripping with water and smiling. She pushes her nose into a hole of mud, and emerges from it grubby faced.

The mobile phone beeps at me, vibrating across the table top. My sister. Sending love and well wishes. Off to a party. Won’t be home to see me. I walk back to the kitchen, pour the tea, notice the light drizzle now coming down across the deep blue sky. I hear the faint laughter from the next door’s backyard, where I catch a peek of his head over the fence, standing under the awning with friends.

The music has stopped. Nothing moves inside. No voice, no presence. The oven timer blinks at me. I blink back, and the dog whimpers at the locked glass door.

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