Diorama No.1

Diorama with antelopes (at least I think they are antelopes), Los Angeles County Museum 2008 © Tanya Clarke

Diorama with antelopes (at least I think they are antelopes), Los Angeles County Museum 2008 © Tanya Clarke

Writing Prompt No. 58

Hands rest on the glass, eyes stare into our faces.

They speak in a way that I sometimes don’t quite understand. I’ve been here a long time looking out into the darkness. Standing. Waiting. They seem to like looking at me. The smaller ones breathe on the glass and use a pointed finger to draw something in the mist. I know those are fingers. I’ve become used to the way they communicate. Heads. Hands. Fingers. Toes. Legs. This I’ve learned.

The smaller ones move about much more than the bigger ones. The bigger ones often look sad and tired. They think I can’t see or hear or think but I see, I hear, I think about everything.

Sometimes a woman, I know she’s a woman, her name is Mary, she comes into our space and checks us all over. Cleans our coats, rubs a cloth over my antlers and polishes our eyes with a fine piece of fabric. I don’t like that much. Having my eyes polished. She whispers that the lights glint of them and makes them shine.

I’m glad my child and partner are here with me although it makes me sad that we were all taken. For what? To stand here forever and ever until they retire us and take us to storage where they’ll put a sheet over us all. They took my partner to fix a torn ear two weeks ago. I thought I would never see her again.

Feeling brave? Want to share your own version? ‘Let it go’ in the comments below.