Tuesday, May 23, 2023

On a swingset in an empty playground in Kharkiv, Ukraine

He leans his bike against the post on the corner of the playground. With nobody else around, he doesn't bother to lock it. With the swingset to himself, he sits down on one of the two swings and rocks back and forth for a moment. Looking up into the sky, he decides to fly there, so he begins swinging – legs stretched while going forward, tucked in while going back, a little higher each time. At the highest points, he looks up into the sky again and again, imagining that it's always been empty except for clouds, rain, and birds. He never looks to his left at what's left of the school. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 23 May 2023)


This is based on this photograph taken in Kharkiv, Ukraine, in April 2023 by Armin Smailovic. I saw it in this article in the Swiss online magazine Republik. 

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