By Mira Mattar.

The group watching the spinning top is similarly lit. Their focus is strict. The atmosphere is taut. The top spins and the bird flaps. Breath is held.

Factors that might affect the top’s momentum include: breath, someone stumbling and knocking the table, a telephone ringing, the pizza finally arriving.

Because it is a painting, the possibility of the cockatoo defying natural laws (which we now accept as simple facts) still or can still exist. But looking at the painting from our present vantage point we know the bird almost certainly died during the experiment, proving once and for all that living things need oxygen to survive. Yet we also now know that some types of life can survive without oxygen and that perhaps there are in fact no natural facts—in that there is no nature, and there are no facts.


[This is a short extract, the full article is available to read in Issue Two]


Mira Mattar is a writer, contributing editor at Mute and 3:AM, and one third of Monster Emporium Press. Her work has been published in Two Serious Ladies, PANK, Lemon Hound and other places. She lives in south east London.