He sits in a wooden chair
in the center of a locked room.
The chair is bolted to the floor.
The room is bare, but for a light
hanging above him like a sword.
The light is dim, without a shade.
He is not wearing a blindfold,
but he might as well be—
for there is nothing to see
beyond the industrial gray walls.
No one has come into the room.
He is not sure how he arrived,
only that he is here now, alone.
If he listens he can hear his breath
otherwise the room is silent
as if all sounds are absorbed
into the walls before they enter.
he sits with his back to a locked door,
or what he assumes is a locked door,
for he has not attempted to open it.
Every now and then a light flickers
beneath the door as if a warning
to him in a code he cannot fathom
even if he were able to see it.
The room is cold, not overly so, but
enough to cause his nose to run.
He would like to wipe his nose
but his hands behind his back are tied,
as are his feet to the chair’s legs.
He doesn’t know how long he has waited,
nor how much longer he must wait,
nor what he is waiting for exactly:
just that he waits in a chair, alone,
in a room; and, he is just like you.
(October 4, 2022)