In the waiting room

(NB this was composed last friday, but is written in real time to given the illusion of immediacy, spontaneity if you will)

So the man sat next to me has a hole in his hand. Not a regular cut, but a deep circular indentation seeping blood. For all intents a hole, a pit. He holds a ragged kleenex over it. "I’ve had deeper cuts shaving" he mumbles, catching my eye. He is accompanied by a woman who would not be considered beautiful by any culture’s standards. She has a very swollen (possibly broken?) ankle. I’m wondering did she do that to him? Did he do that to her?

Every now and again the door to the main area of the medical centre opens and a name is called. The hole in the the hand and the swollen ankle disappear inside. I’m here because I can’t hear (pardon the pun), I’ll spare you the details, but my hearing has become..muffled over time. I only realized quite how muffled it was when I woke up two weeks ago unable to hear. Now I am about to hear a lot better.

Waiting rooms are great places for watching people. Everyone here has something wrong with them, their bodies conspiring against them. Aside from Hand Man and Leg Woman, no one else has any obvious flaws. Maybe the man over the other side of the room has found a lump this morning? A strange new parcel of skin appearing in an otherwise familar place. Or the woman with the frayed trousers and cheap jewellry has chest pains, but she felt fine an hour ago? Difficult to tell. Mentally smiting people with diseases for a hobby is a bit strange and I eventually have my ears done and find myself out in the street. Nothing seems louder but everythings a bit sharper