World outside my bathroom door

Mumbled voices, loud movements
Someone knocks now and then
“It’s occupied”
A moment of complete isolation
The bathroom tiles and I- we’re glued
The soap dispenser and I- we’re pushed
The shower head and I- we pour down in gentle drops

My childhood favourite song next door
I slightly lift my face, listen
A sense of light in all the heavy
Knock, again
“It’s occupied”
Oh, it has been an hour
The knocks and my heart
Speeding in alternate moments

Breathe in, breathe out
Name five things you can see
My grandmother’s towel
My mother’s toothbrush
My father’s razor
My sister’s perfume
My hand on my chest
Tap, tap, tap
“You’re okay, you’re alive
You could step out now
To the world outside your bathroom door
There is food, light, music, people”

But—
I like it better here
The silence, the immovability of space
The sound of ventilators in perfect decibels
Breathing in, breathing out
Knock knock, again
“Give me a minute”
I like it here better
But I should step out now.

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