Model: Jami Grey
Photographer: Thomas H P Jerusalem, MUTE Photography

Grain by grain the sand rubbed against her. It was never too hot and never too cold. The temperature was always just the same. Just right. Just enough to keep her comfortable. But today she wasn’t comfortable. Today the slanted walls seemed to shrink inward, and the reflective glass shone too brightly, and the sand was too much. There was no water, no ocean, in her sandy home which made the sand seem even more bland and irritable. It pinched and crunched and made her skin crawl. She wriggled left and wriggled right, and rolled onto her stomach and onto her back, and did her best to once again become comfortable.

Then He came. He towered over her and lifted her up without any sort of struggle, and turned her world upside down. She hated this part. The part where everything flipped and she would have to squeeze through the tiny mouth that separated the top cone from the bottom cone, and now she was in the top cone which was now technically the bottom. Once she fell through, she sucked herself into the curvature of the wall and watched as the sand cascaded before her. She let it cover her feet but never dared to get buried too far for fear of getting stuck as time counted down.

Soon the sand had settled and usually she would settle too, but today she couldn’t settle. Because today the slanted walls seemed to shrink inward and the reflective glass shone too brightly and the sand was too much, and she wished to see a real beach with real sand. A real beach would be vast and expand for miles. And there would be birds and fish and sandcastles and umbrellas. And she could run and she could stand and she could spread out, and the sand would not be too much because she would have the choice to leave it if she wanted to.

For the first time in a long time, she began to feel. She felt frustrated and angry and confused and she decided she deserved better. All of this became so much that all she could think to do was pound on the glass that kept her inside. It shook and vibrated and made a sound unlike anything she had ever heard. She did this again over and over until the tiniest crack slithered down the glass. She rolled her fingers into fists and slammed them into the crack with all of her might until something gave loose. The glass broke open and out she poured along with all the sand as it spread out across the floor.

And now she could run and she could stand and she could spread out. And the sand was not too much because she could leave if she wanted to because she was strong now. All she had needed was some time.


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