The Faraday Effect

by Beth Thomas

Because he tells her to, she puts on a vintage Easter dress one size too small and sprawls in a circle of light on the dusty floor, then pretends to watch two plastic horseflies stacked as if mating. He circles, snapping pictures with a garage sale SLR camera. She lets her eyes unfocus, lets her jaw slacken and the moisture run from her cracked lips. His clockwise movement suggests the backward passage of time as marked by her exposed arms and legs. Two-thirty becomes twelve-twenty, and so on. The spotlight illuminates the magnetic curve of her. She feels the room beyond the plastic flies. The walls are blue and worn and full of holes like the pants her mother used to wear to garden.