A.J. Collins


Once thought to be a product of aristocratic breeding, perfect vision allows a human to read a quarter-inch-tall print from twenty feet away. In the 11th century, Scottish King Malcolm II could identify the members of any clan in his jurisdiction a full two minutes before they were within arm’s reach if they were walking at a reasonable pace. Many men are offended by the idea of perfection. A man, when he wants to spend his life with another man, may consider him perfect.


A man must be a product of what he is surrounded by, not of what he wishes to be surrounded by. A garbage man finds ugliness at home, where his daughter is constantly courted. The boys see in her one fine woman. The truth is: she is shy. Her father doesn’t prefer a single one of them over any other.


The typeface of any given text affects how one processes the information communicated by that text. Is it scientific, gleeful, an emergency, a suggestion? For easy readability, the best book and newsprint typefaces are said to disappear.


Once, a woman said to me, “Oh, it’s past midnight.” I wasn’t sure if her rapid hand gestures were meant to obscure or show me the diamond.




“Diamond” first appeared in Black Warrior Review, 33 #1 (Fall 2006).