Our writer-in-residence Emily DeDakis is developing an imaginative text piece that draws from the time she spent in Sailortown and her curiosity for the neighbourhood.
To represent this ongoing process on our digital platforms, Emily has created pieces of ‘flash’ fiction that use a sentence from her main story as a departure point for a new short text to take us somewhere completely different. This process represents the fractured experience of Sailortown – a neighbourhood made up of the fragments of current residents’, workers’, dwellers’, visitors’ and wanderers’ stories.
Below is Emily’s first instalment of flash fiction:
THIS WAS THE BIGGEST EXTINCTION EVENT OF HIS LIFE SO FAR – S disappearing.
For a long while the population was healthy — there were flocks of weirdos around the playground in junior school: trading cards for wizard games, touching up their mohawks with smuggled eggs, walking on their hands for as long as they could after the bell rang till the headmaster chased them down. They fell over laughing, scoffed at, admired, applauded, eye-rolled. The survivors of the species had to hang together the older they got: study or drugs or steady jobs picked them off gradually over senior school. By the end of university it felt like only him and S. Once in a blue he’d spot a kindred, plumage tucked away, just a glimpse of the weird out in the reeds. S never hid anything, till he wasn’t there. Right up to the end, when S stopped answering his calls, they’d hit up laser tag at the weekend, show up to other guys’ bachelor dos in pink & blue prom dresses, start fights with the misogynist dudes in their union, rent matching yurts in the desert for summer holidays, sing anarchist carols on the sidewalk outside the church, cruise on their bikes to the local, and they’d sit in the window seat swallowing strong beers and talking about nothing, just nothing, just nothing.