i had a bath. life continues
so you see it was necessary to have a bath.

i turned the light off so the air was blue.
there need be no effort wasted by floating in a hot bath,
on hiatus from life.

on the plane you’d stopped breathing
when you saw you were seated next to me.
it was, in a way, a victory for me.
i’d smiled for the first time in months.

my eyes are itchy and my cheeks feel grubby but
there’s nothing I can do about that.

you can’t wash away tiredness.
there’s not a whole lot of dirt on a plane
and anyway,
clean will suffice for now.

you’d gone: you monster, you said,
you’d gone: student, mediocre at best, and
you’d gone: such an ego, and i,
i went, i believed you.

i’d believed you.

the glass is beginning to fog.
my cheeks are flushed and they
will think this is a sign of health.
through the window, the clouds rise like cathedrals.

Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places.

If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate.