I get caught in cycles of rediscovery, sifting through collections of old work and pictures my mind leaked out over the years. I focus too much on the future and forget passing details easily. A friend once called that kind of intense gaze a “heat lamp stare”, a phrase I immediately loved.

While scooping the pumpkin guts out of my old computer I came across a folder entitled “Strip Search”. Inside were all my long-sent submissions for the show. The tuna haiku, all written and video responses, here was every jump through the flaming hoop. My short story is above, the writing unchanged from when it was presented to Robert Khoo a few years ago. The prompt was anything but no more than three hundred words. This one clocks in at two ninety nine.

I feel like most makers have a thing they carry with them from before the Start. The thing that makes them say, “If only I could…” while staring at the moon or whatever. A chair they dream of making, but not quite yet. They have not even begun to know the way of things. Let us call it, oh I dunno, their Heart Quest. Their Soul Destiny.

This is the splinter of such a story. I’m glad for any part of it to exist outside myself.