Between Two Days

It’s midnight, and at last, I’m stretched out like a star across the bed, which is all mine for four unusual nights.

A glow filters through the bedroom curtains, but tonight I don’t mind—the glow only adds to the steady beat of raindrops on the fire escape on the other side of my bedroom wall.

There’s a syncopated beat, also a steady tap tap tap, and then the pitter-patter that sounds smaller in the background. I guess the sounds are different because some drops are hitting trees and others stairs, and then some is rain falling not straight from the sky, but dripping down from tree branches and power lines.

I like that I can hear it. The night is open, the bed is wide, and for the ten thousandth time I wonder why I didn’t let go of today and go to bed sooner, because it’s so nice to lie here without feeling the need to sleep immediately and make tomorrow imminent. Tomorrow, with its requisite unbeddening, when slumber ebbs, and consciousness and the weight of the world return. I prefer this zero-gravity in-between.

I expect to wake up with the weight of two cats trapping me in the bedclothes, but it isn’t so. At my first stirrings, they begin making trouble, tearing through the rooms of the apartment, scratching the couch and the new rug and maybe the scratching post, wildly demanding with their antics and the loud one’s sudden cries that I get out of bed and prove to them I am alive, and I love them.

As soon as I’ve steeled myself to get dressed and ready to go, the cats finally deign to join me, purring. And so the morning gets a little later still.

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