She lay down
Inside herself. Inside the mosquito net. Inside the room. Inside the house. Inside the night.
It was like one of those Russian babushka dolls – one into the other into the other. But the layers made it like a cocoon, soft-safe and comforting. She felt her feet touch the foot board. She always hated that – it gave her the feeling that the bed had shrunk. Or that she had grown taller. Both made her feel claustrophobic.
She shifted herself closer to the headboard in a series of softly thumping, flopping movements, like a fish out of water. Then, she slowly opened out her mind. She liked to do that every night. It was like tidying up the kitchen just before closing it for the night. The day lay scattered across the counter. Vegetables freshly washed and still dewy with water, waiting in the wire basket to be dried and packed away in plastic bags into the fridge. The coffee-filter, in bits and pieces like a broken steam engine, waiting to be assembled. The mop, soggy and crumpled and tired, waiting to be squeezed out and aired, its night’s rest well-earned. The taps, dripping a steady, eroding grumble, waiting to be shut up. The stove, inscrutable, cold; silent about the heat and the fire that had burned so fiercely in its heart all day long.
She worked with a steady, calming rhythm that slowly, slowly emptied her mind. The last few thoughts quarrelled and argued like the last bit of water emptying out into the drain. Then, they were also gone.
Peace. In the distant dark, something spoke. She wasn’t sure what. She couldn’t care to find out as she gently floated way into the emptiness