It is marvelous to be sure of something, she thought, and removed her shoes. Barefoot, she pushed back her chair and stood, moved aside her place setting, the vegetable platter and the gravy bowl (stopped in their rotation in front of her) and mounted the dining room table. Her family did not look up or applaud (she’d thought they might). Then it came to her and speaking to herself, said, maybe you have mounted the dining room table before? My husband would know, he makes lists, but he is intently masticating and I cannot find the confidence required to disturb him. How long, she thought, are you to remain there? And this is important, for just after this thought—the one about the length of time she would remain on the table—she experienced another inspiration. It is so good to be brought back, to know with conviction what’s next; she inched herself backward until only the balls of her feet and her toes made contact with the table, and, bending to her utmost, she pushed off and arched into the air of the dining room—listening all the while to cutlery scraping porcelain, to masticating. In that moment before she landed on the flat of her back, she felt at once hopeful and sad for humanity’s fate, and wondered if spacewomen felt similarly while gazing down at Earth through their capsule’s small windows. She landed. Her husband set down his fork and knife, patted dry his lips, and said, “Fool, fool, once again you have chosen to step outside of us. What, may I ask, are you hoping to find there?” She called out her love for them, and they took her with their arms and lifted her to her feet. They slid open the patio door, a wildness of motion, arms flapping like goony birds rushing into the night.
Michael K. Meyers’ Fiction, Audio & Video have appeared in Quick Fiction, Nano, Fringe (audio), Mad Hatters’ Review (audio), Ninth Letter (video), Chicago Noir, Word Riot, 2River (text & audio), The New Yorker, Fiction, Chelsea, and Bound Off (forthcoming). His performance art has been exhibited at MOMA, The Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art, The Israel Museum, The Tel Aviv Museum, The Warsaw Institute of Contemporary Art, The Fringe of the Edinburgh Festival, and others. An audio piece, “The Audio Encyclopedia of Personal Knowledge,” was included in “The Best From The First Ten Years of ATC.” Recently (’08 & ’09), parts of “The Audio Encyclopedia” were presented at the Getty & Whitney. He teaches in the graduate writing program of The School of The Art Institute of Chicago.