The Toothbrush

I cannot bring myself to pack my toothbrush.

It's not too heavy,

Neither does it take a lot of space,

But it is the final piece

Of the now deconstructed

and hastily re-packed puzzle.

The only thread -

A lone, simple, everyday object

That I barely register,

Yet, cannot live without.


It's resting in its corner,

Serene like a monk who's practiced the everyday,

Everyday.

And, now is free of it.

Sitting pristinely till called to do its duty.

And yet this monk,

Free of attachments

Is the last piece securing me to a life

That's now taking a proverbial turn.


It's that moment: before I pack my bags and leave.


Can it extend to days,

and possibly months,

If not years

Of memories built

And thoughts shared

And laughter

Even the tears and sad smiles

All of them.

Just for one more moment,

A really long one?


Like a long starving cub

At an all-you-can-eat buffet,

I just want to devour every unborn moment.

Yet, I must be content,

To regurgitate what's already been consumed,

Later,

To reminisce on a nostalgic hot mess

Of the half-felt,

half-lived,

half-true,

half-desired.

Just many halves with conspicuous holes.


For can mere memories ever be whole,

as the people we leave behind?


The leaking taps smile at me today,

Ah, the irony!

My eyes leak too,

And my hands are just as futile

at plugging this leak.

Maybe leaks can rarely be attributed to faulty taps,

It's the pipes,

That rust and sometimes get choked up;

With all they refuse to let through;

And then one day,

We leak.


I twist the tap with a firmness,

That reflects in the mirrored face

That I must now wear for sometime.


"You've taken everything you need?

Your chargers, your toothbrush?"

I smile and nod.

Because my voice is lost somewhere in the blocked pipes;

Hoping with all my might,

That my smile is mistaken for excitement,

My nod for the affirmation I fail to deliver verbally.


I leave in an impregnated silence,

Knowing I've left behind everything I will ever need.


And,

A little to the left

In my bathroom,

The now never-to-be-used toothbrush,

Smiles back.



Home is where the toothbrush is! A prose that wrote itself as life took a different turn: this one is dedicated to my loving family; all of whom must be too puffy eyed to read this. :)

P.S. Mom: Please keep my toothbrush for another day.

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