Day Room

Summer, 2011 / No. 26

The Day Room is a solar cell,

pure science, stored-up light kept captive

in the quietest of solariums.

A room made of windows; outside, a swarm

of snowflakes are miniscule flotsam from

an exploded star, raining all around

behind the clear glass. A terrarium

with commercial-grade carpet and wheelchairs

in rows at the start line of the slowest race.

A field of silence punctuated by

coughs, potholes roughing up the terrain.

Photons feel like tryptophan,

filling the residents with a great weight. The air

is thick here, makes moving thick. Nothing without

effort. Sleep creeps around the room touching one

patient, then the next, juvenile games of narcoleptic

exchange. Noon news illuminates like a controlled

burn, makes sure they all stare in the same direction:

toward the television and into the light.