What Direction Now? Life at the intersection…



She said I’d need octopus eyes to be able to see as many cameras as I had up on the screen, I chuckled, said, yeah, for sure, and she went back to her work. But, I could no longer concentrate on mine, partly because I do, in fact, try to watch too many cameras at once, but mostly because the image she’d created bothered me. I mean, I’m no expert on cephalopods, but I’m pretty sure octopi have only two eyes each, and I own that many myself already and the office isn’t underwater so it wouldn’t be too much of an improvement. Still, I wondered if she thought that the octopus has eyes like an insect, all segmented like a fly. Or, maybe she was saying I would need as many eyes as octopi have arms to accomplish the task in front of me, which is a significantly more terrifying and interesting image to consider: Would I have eight tentacles, each with an eye on the end—or would the eyes run the entire length of the arm (there are a lot of cameras, after all)? Would these tentacles sprout from my face somehow—and if so, would I also have a set of normal human eyes in between—or would they be attached to my body somewhere else, maybe reaching out from my trunk in all directions or lining the side of me from shoulders to knees? Would they each operate independently and if so, how would my brain handle the load? Also, where did I come from in the first place—am I a living fever dream? a mutation? some kind of experiment, like a government-built security-camera super-soldier? What would happen if…she must have said “goodbye” as she left with her cart in tow—she seemed like the friendly kind of person who always says “goodbye” no matter what—but I only barely heard the door close behind her, with my penchant for shy absence, caught as I was in my all-seeing tentacle dream.
I’d like to be under the sea…

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What Direction Now? Life at the intersection…

About Andrew.

Andrew Cartwright grew up in Indianapolis, IN, but has lived over the years in such places as Denver, CO; Fairfax, VA; and Rivne, Ukraine. He is a former nonfiction editor for both Indiana Review and phoebe; he has also worked for the intersectional feminist journal, So To Speak, and the national literary magazine, Electric Literature. His work has appeared in The Normal School Online, Copper Nickel, Esquire Ukraine, Literary Hub, and Word Riot.

For more information about me and links to other writing, visit my author page at cartwriter.com





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