I was walking back to the parking lot where I usually leave my car. A free parking lot, away from the city center. Once there, I clearly heard a phone ringing. A high-pitched, vibrant ringing, like those of old fashioned phones.
I looked around. I could perceive I was alone, even if my eyes didn’t reach every angle of the parking area. At first, I wasn’t able to visualize the source of that ringing.
It came from a public telephone, without any booth, fixed on a wall.
I’d never noticed it before.
I knew a blind alley used to lie behind that wall, always deserted and abandoned. Now to use as a dump for the surrounding factories.
I drew near the phone, and took the receiver. “You know what time is it?” – a familiar voice answered, but I couldn’t recognize it.
“I’ve got no watch with me.”
“Who’s speaking?” I kept perceiving those words as if I heard them before, semantically and physically.
“You know me better than anyone else.”
I started thinking it was a joke. Maybe some worker, hidden in a factory nearby, having fun in front of his colleagues.
I hung up. Few seconds, then the phone rang again. I took the receiver again.
“It’s seven o’ clock.” He told me.
“Time flows, G.” He knew my name, and the thing roused my suspicions.
I looked around, and all I could see was parked cars, the covered sky and the darkened windows of the factories.
“Come back tomorrow, it’ll be the same time again. Come back the next day, and it will still be the same time. It’s that what you’re thinking, isn’t it?”
Quite annoyed by the trick, I looked around again.
“I’m behind this wall” – he said – “and it’s up to you, to decide when I can get out of here.”
I hung up. And I went to my car, regardless that persistent ringing.
-Marco Guerra Avitabile
01 – Chalk Point
02 – Augury In An Evaporating Tower
03 – Coprolite
04 – The Clearing