The glistening reflection of the canals glazed the surface and the landscape, complementing the
surrounding water, flowing like blood as it drifts through the veins of the city, flushing the griefs
of yesterday, and bringing life to the creature that is Venice. Keahi’s legs hung on the sidewalk,
skimming the lightly tinted water, sitting on the tiles chipped with history and culture and behind
him were houses that reflected the flamboyance of the city. He squinted at the light gleaming off
the people who were seated at the outdoor cafes on the far end of where he was sitting. Like
them, Keahi allowed the piquant Venetian Lagoon to consume him. But while the others enjoyed
the passing time like children picking at violet petals hidden behind their heart shaped leaves,
Keahi lived in a moment he hoped to forever call his present.
The city captured his luminous, innocent beauty and besmeared it onto its potpourri like canvas
but with the inhibitive and infinite nature of a Borgesian labyrinth as a remembrance of Keahi for
it knew well that time goes on like the rhythm of water.
Countless times he watched people with dreams and aspirations come and go, creating Venice on
their canvases and capturing the essence, the pure and sincere impression and vitality of the
thriving city in their ways. And Keahi, urged by the undulated movement of colors he saw
around him, hummed a sweet, unfamiliar tune.
Across the water from him was a nostalgia shop that sold old toys and goods like a museum of a
manifested past. Keahi looked to find a moving silhouette of a boxy figure and saw a dash of
grey revealing the silhouette’s soft expression.
He felt a cry, an overtightening of a screw and his eyes swum around the image, the image of the
silhouette’s oblong face, a face one would think only a mother could love, the silhouette’s face
that framed a set of round eyes which caught the light of the sun in the daytime and of the moon
in the night, a stubbly protruding chin, a roman nose, and perpetually rosy cheeks. Keahi knew
that silhouette and he knew well, the silhouette’s unwrinkled fingertips rubbed smooth from
smudging shadows, the soft muscular lining leading to the small of his back, the grasp and
fulfillment of his embrace: Giotto’s testing, shy eyes that hides behind his thick dark eyebrows,
and wispy eyelashes that withdrawed out and swept him in.
Keahi’s body reacted to the sight of Giotto, the one person who continued to appear in Keahi’s
riddle of confusion, the one person who he refused to be able to let go of. Who is this man but an
ache in a subsisting void of lost and found places and people. A world beyond seeing then
knowing, beyond shape or form, an unimagined imagination. His tears tickled, trickling and
crawling across his face like an infant, watching the water chuckle as the gondoliers lulled the
sea with their songs, rowing away towards a bound of light. He watched the movement of the
city as its skin glowed with a fuse of warm and cool hues of bright red, tuscan blue, and swirls of
light and dark, the people and the birds like light fan brush strokes, just a breeze with the sunset
adding to the life of the city, its light soon to be borrowed by the Venetians who later lit their
home with its warmth.
He rose from the sidewalk and let out a moan. His eyes darted from the sky to a pole to an ant.
His vision white, he rubbed his face vigorously as if to spark fire. He shook violently and
was harsh and comforting at
groaned as colorless liquid trickled down his legs. No longer did he see the the city— only its
mark, its static yet palpitating nature, stirring his self’s running definition. The city, just a
throbbing monster of delirium, expelled from his recognition. Still trembling, he plopped onto
the puddle he had made and moaned with his mouth ajar. No different from the ants that crawled
through the walls, he sat just as absent in mind. The exotic mix of dark and light skinned
strangers spilling through and around him as if the Chamber of Guf had overflown. Nothing was
further than what it seemed, cornering, pushing, and pulling him. He sat up as he crouched into a
squat like a frightened roly poly doing only what it knows to do in knowing only to protect itself.
His eyes and the corners of his lips stretched down. His face contorted and strained like the
tragedy of mud pies. He held his legs and squeezed himself breathing bullets of air with cold
sweat dripping, dripping, dripping from every surface of his body.
Keahi found himself coiled in his slimy blanket drenched in anxiety, when he woke up to a
pleasant, deep voice calling out a familiar name, yet he wondered what about it was familiar. He
found nothing not strange, everything being so strange. The room he woke up in was white—
white walls, white sheets, white bedframe, white desk, white ceiling— almost drained of
pigment with just a single violet soaking in a pellucid, tall vase of frail water, barely showing
any signs of life aside from that of its host. The feeling of strange
Afraid of the sunlight blasting past the window as if to touch him, Keahi kept his eyelids closed
gently over his eyes as he drifted away for a second trying to remember his forgotten dream
before he heard the same pleasant voice calling out the yet again familiar and unfamiliar name.
As the voice and the name approached him closer and closer, he recognized a melody in the
voice. The door creaked open exposing just a head. Keahi, weary of everything around him, saw
a face of a stranger with bright eyes, a stubbly protruding chin, a roman nose, rosy cheeks, and a