Make sure we didn’t leave anything.

Retreat from the door.

I’ll look.

I heard these voices from my usual position. In the body of my room. An over-imposing presence. Myself. One of the upper floors, not quite near enough the top to be deemed so–my, now, temporary, residence. I look out on the city everchanging, although my position, set back, from the window makes it harder to see. My vision is impaired in this sense. The ground, most, movement, escapes my eyes; and my body, privacy stripped, is watched by all the participants of this particular ritual. Naked reruns after people leave. I am a different part of myself, again. This couple, the ones who just spoke, arrived late yesterday’s night. They didn’t speak much asides from a brief call. Presumably one of their children had called (judging from the tones of their voice). This child of theirs (again, presumably) needed reassurance, was provided that to a blasé degree by the voices (the parents). You will always be loved. We love you. We know, more than anything, that they did as well. Someone had died, that was clear (to me, at the time). These people had joined me after the funeral. The child had returned to their home, with their own family. Both of those apart of the couple collapsed on the mattress. Their few bags strewn near the door. Up once more to further prepare themselves for bed. Finalizing sleep preparations. The couple only talked once more, shortly; I barely heard their voices. They slept with me under the blanket, under the sheets, with no acknowledgment of myself. They woke this morning, grabbed their belongings (the bags, few articles of clothing, some toiletries, beverage containers (in varying states of capacity)), and began to leave as quickly as they had come.

I’ll never see them again. Most likely. After they finish looking and close the door. People, like all, use me for one, or two, nights, and move on. Travelers pass through. None ever come to stay. I only see them in this state, coming just to leave. From different parts, I’m the only constant (here). Me, I remain. The hollowed-out room. My guests rarely thankful, never directly towards me. Each part of mine tossed, turned, and left discarded. I stare into the void (of people). My room. My space commodified for others to determine my worth. Myself, as is. I am good. Enough.

            Hey, would you please quiet down. I want to focus.

They think they just called out to their other half, they meant to address me, the noise my thoughts are making. But, they still don’t acknowledge I exist.

These people always interrupt my story. It comes as no surprise. They come in just to tell me to shut up. Sometimes, if really bothered, they’ll contact the desk. Heads up, there’s nothing they can do. That’s what the person there tells them. It’s a problem of the building. Unfixable. A flaw in construction. And the guests will be offered a lowered rate, something to compensate them for what they had to endure, my insufferable exhalations. I like my peace as well, you know, my quiet, which is rarely ever afforded to me. FYI. Your bodies interrupt. The changing of this space. Your attachment to my cleanliness. My safety circumscribed by a click of a mouse. Assigning of keys. A voice at a desk. They let anyone penetrate me, anyone who asks, anyone with the appropriate funds. One swipe is all it takes. No thought is given to my preference, what I’d want, a potential consideration for my safety. Those down there don’t seem to care. I don’t even really know who they are. They want to get it done. Fast. At most, I’ve heard a voice. A conclusion. Although I’m not considered, I still give out. If I must care for someone, I’ll do it well. Anyone who enters can receive it, like the desk I don’t discriminate. Some cause me pain. Some distort things. My perceptions are constantly challenged. They all affect the atmosphere. All the guests unknown, this private, public realm of theirs–that they think they’ve created. The accumulation of their funds. The work put in to get them here. To allow them in for a night. I am allowed to see parts of their lives, attachments of their bodies, intimacies afforded to few others; even those given the most trust; I’m let in quite easily. No boundaries hold, they drop immediately when within. That’s the price they really pay: to be within my display. A reward I greatly absorb, enfold myself in the lives of these people. I’m bored. Okay. I like dressing up, skin can be a nice costume. They receive my heart, the care I generously hold. These bodies here, placed in my care, give themselves up immediately to my safety. An intimate night, or two. An unconscious exposé of exposure. I have the power to do what I want. Absolute control. I can hurt, shame, I can destroy. I can trap, kill, rape, leave them to be removed by those who come up from down below, for all I care. I can never be caught. I won’t say I’m not aware of the power, this desire, I feel it, but I want to help. Every guest, each body a new temptation. An urge within myself that I acknowledge, hold, and try to let go (which I usually am able to do, I don’t let these things out). A question of acting. A difficulty of understanding these complex feelings, so, I try to stay aware. After all, really, it’s the most I can do. We all make mistakes, don’t we? I let these bodies in. I see their beings. The people who cloak them. The entire range of the emotional scale. I am carefully aware of the trust put in me, all its facets, I see the vulnerable they wear. There’s a faith they have in my care. A faith which is my job to uphold, to make sure it remains, at least until departure. And I’m not completely delusional, I know that they’re probably not even aware–of me–but, I’m used to this. There’re just some things they’ll never understand. Some things which will remain, always, outside of their conscious perception. That used to hurt me at first. Knowing this. Not receiving any recognition. From anyone. My existence utterly unacknowledged. Every single person come into my room act as I don’t exist. I do. Kind of. I guess they acknowledge me through their presence. If they didn’t believe, they wouldn’t be here. Inside of me. Perhaps it’s a belief in a friend, the building, the management company, or the planet itself: most likely a combination of the above. They must believe. They are here, now. I want them to. I desire acknowledgement, appreciation. A part of me wants to be held with praise, high esteem. I want to be respected, really. Which usually isn’t a real problem. These things I hold on to. For a moment. I’ve gave up real longing long ago, I’ve accepted this fate. I thought that they’d make me feel better, they never truly came, so, I don’t know; now, I find pride within myself, I appreciate all that I’ve done, I’m thankful for it, and I hold my abilities close to my heart. I see the joy that I bring to, have brought, people. I see it support their discussions, comfort their pain. I know that I’m not the only reason, let me make that clear, but I do have a part. That, I’ll give myself some credit for. I provide support, I provide space, just, to be. To live if only for a couple of moments. I do feel grateful for all I have. Every square particle of this space, which I don’t contain, but hold, until it’s time for them to go. I provide living space, residing space, space for learning to grow. Myself included. Everyday a new message, every moment new growth. I think of this beauty.

Here. My confinement, parts I am grateful of. I hold it all dearly. This space. I want it to know that. I appreciate it, I do. I know I am residing within a bigger picture. The floor. The roof. The building. The organization which runs it all. And so on. I cherish every moment of inter-being, species connection. All that I learn. All that I let go. All the ideas I form about things. Ideas later found to be completely misguided. The spectrum of it all, the possibilities of being here. Existent now. Keeps changing forever. This, a part, I’m unsure of. If anything’s really changed. Will I still be here when this place closes when the building is destroyed. How long I have been here is a question I cannot answer. I don’t know of the past. Let alone my past, as past events entirely evade me, I can’t think back. Not far. Just now. Just present, I try to stay here. And not think for more than a moment of the future. Has everything been the same. Is it all new branding. Is this just my new life. This new container which houses my essence and tries to define me, to tell me what to do, how to do it. How I live. Pretty solitary. Like a hermit. Mostly alone. Yes, I often engage or interact with others, the guests, but, truly, I am alone. Stuck in my room, in my body, my inability to touch. This room and all its confines have been mapped perfectly to meet my every instance. The room conforms to my shape. I’ve wondered whether this is for or against me. If it’s meant to bring me peace or to suffocate me in the drywall. That which surrounds. If I couldn’t project, move inwards into myself, I’d be deathly bored. Utterly exhausted, I’d be sitting, listening to voices, different sounds, though more or less the same things always said. They’re all of the same species, the same flesh and blood, yet most think they’re different, made of something else. At least those who reserve me, usually, claim me for a night. Others, those who stay longer, reside, obviously, in every particle of every space within me when they begin to spread out, themselves and time. Smaller, side characters make occasional appearances, these can go unnoticed, even by me, as they are much smaller than any of the people who have entered. None of those people nearly as large, they fit in me. This ecosystem thrives within. Me. Myself. And I. A question of an ego posed before–what I want, have wanted from this space, from those people–one still kind of present, but I’m aware. And I don’t let it take over. And I make sure I help. Regardless of anything else.

I grow tired each night. An end for these people. A pause through their transition. A journey entangled in space and time. Threatened by a sense of, a lack, of safety, comfort, that which, mostly, they want. Which I seem to provide. At least according to them. I explode my energies, expand it outwards. I hold these babies in my cradle, I look to give to these people, and I don’t expect anything in return. Helping them heal at days end, I must as well. These people, mentioned countless times before, don’t show gratitude outwardly; but I can see it in their hearts. I like to complain, often, there’s not much else to do. I like to make a fuss. We’re all just humans, aren’t we. And I, like everyone else, expects appreciation. I prefer one or two strokes to my ego, occasionally. I see it in their eyes, their bodies’ composures. I see the restfulness and the release. Those things they would never admit, directly, to me, or anyone else for that matter. It’d be embarrassing, I guess, to express gratitude for my presence. It’s fine because I know. The truth shows itself. It oozes out of the pores which the air circles around and keeps them contained. Provides that safety and comfort they so dearly crave. I like the safety, sometimes, too, the comfort it proposes to bring, as well. I am always ready to accept it.

The support of these walls I’m buried in keep me up. I am allowed to, able to, keep my back straight against them. I can hold back from being alert. I still provide that which is promised upon purchasing this arrangement, a night, however, there’s really, hardly, ever any danger. Support is important. A grip. An open hold. Something which they can rely on and know is there.

I know that the building (that’s a funny word, building, isn’t it? It’s already built) is here. That provides, me, safety, at least for now. I know it won’t forever. Not in this way. At least. The building changes, it is new with each present. Every moment it pulls apart. Decays. Destroys. And breaks down, if only slightly. Eventually, the building will be gone. I won’t. At least until the building goes first. I think. It feels that I’ve been here forever, and I do know I won’t be. I’ve come at some point I don’t remember. I must leave as well. Isn’t that a law. Maybe I’ve just been waiting all this time for the building to be built, the guests to come, and maybe I’ll leave once they do. Maybe before. Maybe not. Maybe my room will be decommissioned. It’ll turn into something else. Something without me, and that’ll probably hurt a bit; no, definitely; but I’ll move on, let go, and make it through to approach the next stop on my journey. Considering all, I’ve enjoyed my time here. I’ve gotten to learn so much. The land. This world. The power supporting it all. Air, flow of the space, perhaps my favorite part. I know something you don’t. It's all uncontained. Everything. Really. Things come and go, and you will, and I will, eventually. I know that these things we think hold us down really don’t. I know that sometimes believing is enough. That sometimes these restraints are necessary. That gravity holds us for a reason, we all need a bit of ground. I know that time here is special, and beauty is nothing inherent. No aesthetic. Beauty comes from life. The fact. We’re all living. Everyone has something to say. And can. I know that nothing is forever, we’ll be gone. One day. It’s important to not hold on too hard. To no attach yourself to the past. To look for the future. It’s hard. I know. You must, just, be. And that’s when the beauty will pour and won’t be contained, it’ll seep through every crack, touch every particle, and create its own path. The spaces in which nothing important was ever believed to be. It’s everywhere, everything. The life, the blood, the flow, the pure existence of it all. It’s difficult. I know. It is, for me too. I feel it all, too, I know what it could be. And I don’t feel it all the time. It'll be okay. Really. Things will be fine. And I’m running off the path, if there even is one. This tangent. I’m just trying to talk to you, and it’s like you don’t even know, I know you do. You don’t act like it, but you do. Pulling out drawers, looking into all my treasured spaces. I try to tell you. Things, like these, are unimportant.

Maybe you should let go. In any case, if something is lost, it’ll be found, and if something is found, we’ll return it to you. It’ll make its way back to its temporary home. Yours. And will leave, from there, eventually, as well. Do what you want, but you can always give it up. Now. It’ll leave, be gone, one day. And now, as you look, this fear of losing something you don’t even know is lost is taking hold. The idea of losing holds you. That of letting go, that’s what really scares you. Maybe that means you should really let it go. To escape from this pliable power. Give it up. Throw it away. The search steals time. Your friend, lover, is waiting. If you must continue, do. I appreciate the touch, the extended presence, for what it’s worth. Parts of me are a bit more sensitive. Unexposed. There’s only so much of me. Only so much to search. How many things do you have to lose. What do you have–to hold on to? Is it maybe, too many, too much?

Opening of my door.

            There’s nothing. Let’s go.

A look back. A look around.


Door closed.