The Great White…

th[8]Jordan was escorted down a long white hallway by 4 stoic men dressed in white. Every five paces there was a door on the right; white doors with no windows or openings, not even numbers. On the left stood a cement wall painted white; no windows, no blemishes. It was completely sterile.

The men stopped at a door that was opened. Inside it was white. The bed was white, the sheets, the blanket, pillow, and casing. The walls, ceiling floor, white. There was a porcelain sink and commode, all white.

The door was shut and Jordan lived in whiteness for a week, a month, a year, he did not know.

At night the only sound was that of his own heart and the slightest movement of his body sounded like and avalanche. He heard his eyes blink. The sounds of his own body were so intense sleep came only after exhaustion.

His meals were white rice and milk served on a white tray delivered by a man dressed in white.

At last one day it happened. He closed his eyes and the darkness was gone. All he could see was white. Every thought, memory, and dream were in shades of white.

Day after day he pounded or tapped the wall in a rhythmic pattern hoping for contact with someone next to him to respond. There was always nothing.

One day the door opened a man in a white suit appeared. His hair was white. He stood in the doorway. Jordan stood up to him. The man handed him a white tablet with a black pen.

“Think carefully, Jordan,” the man said. “Write what has been taken from you but you still possess. Write what your room does not have?”

Jordan turned, squinted, and scanned the room. He closed his eyes trying to conjure a thought beyond white to write on the paper. He turned back to the man and scribbled on the tablet. Jordan handed the tablet back to the man.

The man looked at the tablet and raised an eyebrow. “Hope,” he said. “You are free, sir.”

Jordan walked past the man and toward an open door at the end of the hallway. Suddenly he turned and walked back to the man in the white suit. Jordan held out his hand. The man handed him the pen. Jordan went back inside the room and etched hope on the wall next to the bed.

Jordan left the room and handed the pen back to the man.

“You know we will wipe it clean,” the man said.

“I just traced it,” Jordan said. “It’s been there all along. It’s written in white. After you’re here for a while you can see it. It‘s something you can‘t paint over or wipe away.”

(January 9: 1984 – You’re locked in a room with your greatest fear. Describe what’s in the room.)

(This is also posted as a Daily Prompt. Tel us about the experience of being outside, looking in — however you’d like to interpret that.)

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15 comments

      • I was just thinking about your post again and was drawn back to literature class. I must commend you on the irony (not sure if intended) of the reinterpretation of literary stereotypes of black vs white.

      • When you write “you” comes out no matter how much effort is expended.
        Indeed, I thought very heavily about race and just let the cards fall where they may.
        Thanks for coming back and commenting.
        My character closing his eyes and only seeing white was sort of spooky to me. the story could have taken a whole other direction at that point, but sometime stories like that have a tendency to shame rather than reason. Although shame is sometimes needed.

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