Everything here loses its urgency. We’ve all become impassive, like statues unaware of the relentless accumulation of the dust of days. Instead of stretching, my notion of space hardens, contracts. Very quickly I get used to the idea that from now on we will be alone, trapped in a gigantic spider’s web that thickens around our heads. In this insignificant part of the universe we are happy to move about with pointless gestures, with patchwork dreams, with conversations often had only for the pleasure of hearing our own voices. Our bodies no longer have a mission to fulfill, except to inhale the maximum amount of oxygen for our sick lungs, to accustom our clogged ears to unimportant or absurd noises, like the fart or burp of a relaxed roommate, blissfully happy as a dog, and our eyes to see only the things that bother entering our line of sight. Boredom atrophies the imagination. I’m overcome ad nauseam by the banality of my thoughts. Thankfully, spasms grab hold of me. I’m like a wild horse imprisoned in a serene body where life beats despite the fear, despite the threat of one day being diluted like a common solution in the murderous hospital air.
-from ‘The Hospital,’ by Ahmed Bouanani, translated by Lara Vergnaud