White Noise

When they put the handcuffs around his wrist, he realized for the first time that this was the most painful sensation human beings could live through which had nothing to do with how tight the officer in blue tightened the metal, click after click.

He could smell the smoke in the humid air and liked feeling how it wrapped around him as he sat on his simple porch which he had built with his own hands. Trees, greenery, lush surrounded him on all sides. When the wind picked up the green slowly shook, and he thought about how his daughter use to shake when she was cold in the night until he would bring her closer to his body between him and her mother where she felt safe and he felt his purpose. A bird above him pecked away at an insect in its claws. It was getting colder than usual, but not cold enough for him to go inside his little hut where his family waited. He stayed on the porch and smoked a cigarette that he had rolled. Everyone else on the island stuck with cigarette cartons prerolled because they were ready to go and easy. Light, inhale and forget. Not him. He liked taking the time divide the tobacco, carefully placing it inside the delicate sheet until it was ready to be tucked in and secured. He wet his fingers and sealed his work. Slowly he admired his creation and wondered if this had been better than the last. He lit a match and brought it to the tip, slowly inhaling once the burning began. The first hit was always the best. He wondered whether his last cigarette would be the worse. 

His belly started up again and he remembered he was hungry. The papaya and banana trees around him dimmed one notch when he remembered that he couldn’t pluck a single fruit from their leaves. Quickly he shut the hungry away and focused on the smoke that surrounded him. It came from leaves burning in the garden next door and from his tobacco burning between his lips. He wanted his wife’s lips, just like he always wanted her lips. But she could wait. They would all have to wait. He looked beyond the green and saw the sky. Overcast but bright. It made him think about the time when he walked on the beach and how much darker the overcast made him compared to when the sun shined in full force pushing everyone back inside their homes or in the waters. Overcast wasn’t so bad he thought. Rain was nice too. 

He wished it rained hard so he could walk outside and feel the drops fall on him. He would pay better attention this time. He’d open his mouth and close his eyes. As he imagined himself soaking in the rain with a smile on his face, one drop shed from his left eye in response to an emotion that welled up deep inside of him which he fought off with all his life, as if it would make everything better. He brought the tobacco back to his lips and focused on inhaling the smoke that curled inside of his lungs lovingly.  

He admired a large Monstera Leaf that shined like silver in the overcast sky. Water dripped from it’s pointed tip. He thought of his grandmother who loved making the Monstera Quilts which she had wrapped around him when he was a child. His favorite had been the blood red and white. A good child. Now he was an adult, maybe not so good. His wrist hurt and he wondered if they would hurt forever. He exhaled a smoke cloud and for a second his vision blurred. Smoke was beautiful in its transparency. It could never be contained or captured. It was simply there and then it vanished. It did as it pleased, and then it went free. He wished he could vanish and that his wrist would stop hurting. He wished he couldn’t feel the hunger. His wishes were neverending these days. 

He looked back into the sky and saw that the sun was finally starting to come out. If it had been a normal day he would take his babies to the beach and hold his wife’s hand. It would surprise her because he never held her hand, but she deserved it. She deserved more than what he had brought into her life. The trees around him started to shake when he thought about his gratitude for the people who had never left his side. He shook back and concentrated on his tobacco. One last hit, long smooth, deep in his belly. 

A baby started crying somewhere in the distance. He wondered if the neighbors had finally given birth or if a child had been adopted by a woman who made it her life to take care of others. He wanted to call his wife and have her sit next to him. He would have just stared at her and her beautiful thick black hair. The dark mole above her lip that gave her face so much character. He wanted to hear her voice when she laughed and sang. He was tired of hearing her cry. He was tired of the cries, and all the yelling. the wind picked up and shook the green surrounded him. He started to feel like he was sitting in white noise. The tobacco in his lips slipped and disappeared. He could no longer smell the smoke but instead, the smell of urine underneath some type of sanitation came back to him. Hunger overcame him and all he wanted was silence, sleep. Everything was too loud, too bright. He wanted darkness. He wanted to close his eyes and never open them again. Nowadays it pained him to wake up from the few hours of sleep he had. He prayed for peace of mind with his eyes closed. When he opened them he saw a dirty eggshell white wall. He felt his hunger more than ever. 

Shibasan kept a close eye on number 1098. He didn’t like how he spent his days staring straight at the wall without noticing his meals or medicine checks. That was usually the first signs. Shibasan could tell that he would be another prisoner lost. Some of them just couldn’t handle the isolation. That wasn’t his fault though. He would never feel pity for the people that ended up in here. They were animals who deserved to be locked up. He was just here to give the order when these types finally lost their minds. He’d give 1098 another month. Then they’d start the punishments to make him eat. Right now a little weight loss might be good for him. As he passed the cell of 1098 he wondered what was going on in his mind to make him smile at the eggshell white wall carved with initials and markings from past prisoners. This one’s a goner. 


Lindsay Reva

© Ivan S. Harris Photography
© Ivan S. Harris Photography

Just Because

Just because today I’m feeling rather sentimental I just wanted to say,

Don’t give up. 

Even when you think you’re cornered, if you keep pushing forward, I promise a trap door will come out of nowhere and you’ll see that there was a choice, a plan, something that will save you from sinking to the bottom, all along.

But if you give up, you’ll never know. Even if the answer comes to you in 5 to 15 years. It’ll come like the first sunset. Like the first kiss. Like the taste of a cool strawberry on a hot day. Like looking into the eyes of someone and knowing for once, they’ve been looking for you their whole life.

Don’t give up.

Things get better. Only if you keep pushing forward. Be the train that carried on despite war and weather. Be the heart that loves despite its cracks and floods. Be the hero that save with nothing in return.

Be good baby, and don’t give up. 


Lindsay Reva

© Ivan S. Harris Photography
© Ivan S. Harris Photography

Give or Take

The world is a bright place if you take away the dark shadows that are cast down behind human beings. I think about this because of all the times I’ve been used. I believe we’re all users in one way or the other. Your soulmate, for example, you need him or her. Why is that? Because of how they make you feel. Happiness, love, hope, all those good things bundled up in one complex creature of mankind. The boss you admire and adore? They lead you in the right direction, they bring something out of you which you never knew you had. They make you feel respected. We are using these people to better our lives and in return, you are bettering their lives since you bring something of equal value to them. Whether that’s an equal amount of love or dedicated work force.

And the other type of users?

Those make me sad, tired, drained from deep to shallow. Even if they haven’t touched my life, I feel them sucking the life out of others. These are the user that take advantage of people without giving energy or anything in return. They live off of kindness. They feed off of the givers. They are the neverending takers.

Which role do you live? The givers or the takers? Is there a fine line between the two and why would it matter which side of the pendulum you end up on? Let me tell you, if you’re a giver it doesn’t mean you’re never the receiver. In your lifetime you will receive a monument of A LOT. But if you’re always a taker without gratitude for how people bend over backwards to make you happy, just know that your heart has a hole in it. the sands of the times are slipping out. Each grain represents a piece of happiness and content. You may not notice each output but at the end of your life, you will be filled with only foolishness.



Lindsay Reva



The guards opened the door and a man walked in with the same terrified look, a look worn every time he came to visit her in prison. He tried his best to hide the stress behind his eyes. But she had a gift of feeling him. His best days, and especially his worse. 

She smiled and hoped he couldn’t feel her like she felt him. He smiled back. 
Nice to see you again, handsome. 
Beautiful. It’s my pleasure.
They took a silent moment to take each other in. the smallest details that those who’ve either spent a lifetime together or who’ve only met for a single minute became apparent. She still loved looking at him. He had started to grey at the temples and she would never get tired of studying his aquiline nose and clear honest eyes. “The most beautiful man in existence“, she had said like a damn fool to her girlfriend after she’s spotted him waiting for his drink to fall from a vending machine. She needed nothing, not a drop of courage or push, to go straight up to him and ask with all the weight of the world, “won’t you come out and play tonight?
He looked at her and tried to block out the plexiglass that separated his hands from her soft skin and saw how pretty she looked. He had thought that she would disappear from the women who he had fallen in love with after the judgement, but every time  he came it was as if she was being preserved back into the dark hair girl who would have never let him say no as he waited for his Coca Cola to drop from a machine in a dark hallway. He could feel a shift in his life the day she took one step forward so close to him that anyone watching would have thought that they weren’t strangers at all, but longtime lovers. He looked at her light eyes and saw warm whiskey, gold flakes, dark honey. She had gotten pale in prison and lost all the weight gained that comes with just the comfort of living. Young and refreshed was the only way to describe her who he wanted more than anything. He missed her. He missed his wife.
You cut your hair? 
She touched her hair in response and for a moment felt embarrassed that he had caught her in a shameful act of trying to look good for him in a place like this. After that she placed her hands firmly in her lap remembering that this was the life of a married women in prison. They must try their best to look good for a man who can only get a glimpse of you through the shadows of a prisons reflection.
Do you like it? 
I love it. 
He didn’t love it. but he would have told her the sky was red if it had made her feel better. He remembered when she lay sleeping in their bed and her long aubern hair fanned out on the white sheets and pillow, a mess of spun gold and a sleeping angel. She slept so quitely it scared him. He couldn’t resist leaning down to bury his face in her hair and kiss the line of her jaw and neck. She had cut it all off. That was okay, some memories stayed locked in the memory. Days of her long silky hair would expire only after forever.
How are you, sweets?
When someone asked her “how are you?” she wanted to punch them in the face, give them a slap, or pull their hair. Depending on her mood, of course. When her husband asked her she just wanted to cry. When he asked her if she was happy it was even worse. Happy? She wanted to tell him that all she wanted to do was go to sleep and never wake up and that the only thing that was keeping her away from the blades she could get from kitchen duty, was him. She wanted to tell him that he should find a wife who deserved him. She wanted to tell him to get lost. Not because she didn’t need him anymore, but that she hurt more than anything to know that such a beautiful human being like him could love such a thing like her. He deserved more.
I’m happy. Always, happy. And you? 
She always told him she was happy but he could see the hate shine brighter than a full moon in the blackest sky as she pronounced each syllable. Hap-py. Ha-te. He didn’t blame her though. He didn’t know what she was going through because she had never been the one to complain. She dug it out, made it the best even though everyone said it was the worse. But still the stories he heard about this place, the way the guards carried themselves left him uneasy knowing his angel was stuck in quicksand. He felt sick when he saw his lovely intelligent wife buried inbetween these walls. He dreamt of the day she would come out. How she would feel and how he would feel. It’ll be far from now but it won’t be never and that’s one thing that wouldn’t escaped his consciousness. One day she would be his again. One day…those two words brought him paradise and torture at the same time.
I’m great, beauty.
She felt so ugly. The uniforms were as bad as she imagined and the underwear she wore could have been a parachute, the bra two sizes too big. Socks would be forever stained. She fantasized about the day she would walk out of this hell hole. Just another 4,837 days to go. But she would walk out. She would run right in her lovers arms. Her family would be there and she would thank god for making her see what life was really all about. For now she was stuck with an imagination of her first day of freedom which ran over and over like a broken record, skip and repeat.
Have you been working out? 
He had started working out when he met the other women. He remembered the first time he came to visit his wife after he had started the affair. He was worried that CHEATER would be written all over his face and body the moment he walked into that tiny room with a plexiglass covered with stains and nicks from other prisoners visits. But she hadn’t know, and he hadn’t felt bad. Because he still loved his wife and would do anything for her. This side thing was exactly that, just a thing to do in the mean time. Of course he wished things had been different… The other woman would eventually find someone else and fade away like smoke in the air. She was small time. His wife was his lifer.
I started doing Judo again with some of the guys. You look like you’ve lost some more weight. They’re feeding you enough?
She was sure he was fucking someone else. He would say little things that could only have came from another women. And she just knew it… but never once had she spoken one word about it. Let him live. She was in prison, not him. It didn’t help when her brother had sent her a letter in the mail saying he saw her husband bowling with a blonde who looked half her age. She couldn’t eat much after that. It was hard to eat when you had to compete with a younger, more beautiful, and freer women. She also knew that as long as she was locked behind these walls, bars, and authority, she would never be able to be a wife or lover to the one person who she had made a lifetime vow to. Vows meant nothing in a place like this…
I’m eating all the food I can get.
They looked at each other and without saying a word thought about the first time they had sat down at a table in a park barely knowing one another and  knowing without a doubt that the person sitting across from them was extraordinary. He fed her a brownie. She played with the palm of his hand. They talked, not a single beat missed.
One moment passed and then before they knew it the next came and they stared at each other from opposite sides of a plexiglass. She brought her hand to the glass and he pressed his palm against hers. 
I don’t want you to leave. 
I don’t want to go.
…Anything to feel your lips on my neck.
…Prettier every time I see you.
You’ll come back?
Have I ever not? 
After their 30 minutes of visitation was over they both walked their separate ways to completely different lifestyles. But in all the differences the rhythm which their hearts beat to never strayed from one another. The same stream, the same frequency, the same chemistry that would keep them as one when the rest of life tried to make them two. 
At the moment, all they had was time. Even if time was an enemy, it would only last for a little less than an eternity.
Lindsay Reva


Do you love me? He had asked because he could no longer stand it. This woman had stood by his side for years, looked him in the eyes and told him the truth while the rest of the world lied to him. Sometimes he couldn’t shut her up. Philosophy, controversies, content in every shape or form blurting out of her mouth like her life depended on it. Yet he could never figure out where this women’s passion came from. When she felt, which was all the time, she sang, she spoke, she whispered. Fear of a topic was unheard of. With one exception. Never once had the word Love spilled off of her satin painted lips. Before she answered he wondered if the word no would feel like sitting at the base of a fresh avalanche or whether his heart would burst with lightning bolts if she said that lovely syllable; yes.

Do I love him? Do the birds look to the heavens before they take their flight? Do the priest hear their callings in the rhythm of their pulse or the devil in a thunderstorm? Do the lost never get found? Does the light never illuminate the darkness? Does the deep swallow the shallow? Does the whole devour the halfhearted? Her mind thought about that first question followed by a thousand more and wondered what it would be like if she loved him, and him only. Would she strike him down in his tracks and use every reason known to man to love him, to just be a woman, his women. That’d be nice. His woman, just like mama said I would have to be when I was all grown. But what mama don’t now doesn’t hurt. And what he doesn’t know will stroke his tenderness lovingly. Maybe I do love him… 

I love you just like I love the stardust and eclipses from my past planet, she said as she looked him straight in the eyes. Neither blinked.

She was always saying weird shit like that. But that’s why he loved her. The way her mind worked, like she came from somewhere else, far, far away from any being on earth. Otherworldly, he use to whisper in her ear. When she said she had loved him like the stardust he pictured white sand placed in the palms of her hands slowly running through the cracks between her fingers into the space of emptiness, nothingness and black. He wished she had said she loved him like she loved the sun or the moon. But he was stardust and an eclipse.


Lindsay Reva

silhouette photo of man leaning on heart shaped tree
Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Pexels.com

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