By Timothy Resau

Previously published in The Sparrow’s Trombone on November 22, 2021

I am alone. I’m in a most unique hotel room.  It’s very modern and sparsely furnished. I believe it’s a hotel room. I assume it’s a room. I assume it’s a hotel. 

It’s fun to assume.

I’m watching a TV program. I can see and concentrate on the show and follow what’s going on—the plot, etc. 

It is exciting, interesting, and some moments even enjoyable.

After the program is over, I turn in. I cannot sleep. There seems to be someone with me, but it’s merely a shadow with no recognizable features—perhaps it’s a lost and precious memory. Since I cannot sleep, I get out of bed and go out to my room’s balcony, overlooking a large square courtyard. My balcony is below the bottom or underside of the balcony directly above mine. It’s like I’m living in a cube.

The courtyard below me is perfectly square. It is surrounded on all four sides by hi-rise hotel rooms just like mine. 

They all look the same, like a postage stamp. Exactly the same. They all have one sliding glass door opening on to a balcony surrounding the square courtyard. Though desolate, it is an incredibly beautiful courtyard from above. Very Zen-like. 

Mostly silent.

Gazing down I notice that the square’s filled with small, white pebbles. I hear laughter somewhere in the background. The pebbles have been raked perfectly. I hear a TV broadcasting a weather report in a foreign language, at least it’s foreign to me. The pebbles have been raked in a perfect even circle. 

I know nothing about foreign languages. 

There is a beautiful Japanese red maple directly in the center of the square surrounded by the perfectly raked pebbles, or stones: white pebbles / stones; centered by the red maple. Beautiful.

Suddenly, I look up and around. 

No one is out on his (or her) balcony, just me, and my precious shadow or memory, looking just like all the others on their white balconies, if they even cared to be there. 

Timothy Resau’s writings have appeared internationally in Sylvia, The Beautiful Space, Hudson Valley Writers GuildKGB Bar Literary Journal,  Paddler Press, Defuncted JournalNew Note PoetryNew Pop LitZiN Daily, Discretionary LoveRye Whiskey ReviewFictional CafeEphemeral Elegies, Alternate RouteFront Porch Review (photos)Origami Poems Project “Z”, a Micro-Clapbook, Poetica Poetry Quarterly, Lothlorien Poetrye.ratio, Superpresent, Decadent Review,among others. Find him at &


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