• Vol. 05
  • Chapter 02
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Gemma in the Waiting Room

There was a cotton ball déjà vu
of muffled sounds and vaguely familiar colors.
Gemma knew that she was no longer Gemma,
but there was still a faint trace of the life before.
She could hear the sound
of her first car’s revving engine.
She could hear her mother calling to her
in the backyard, to come inside for tomato soup.
She could feel the round curve of her wooden cane,
when she reached 80.

In the waiting room of new awakenings,
every chair had a white robe on it.
Each of them would be welcomed into
the fresh start of newness—
new name, different height,
new life quest.
She palmed her smooth head,
surprised by the lack of even a single hair.
We all start as babies, Gemma thought,
the possibilities glowing
like a rainbow night light in a dark hallway.
You can’t take the déjà vu with you—
you can only hope that past mistakes
will guide you not to walk along the same path.

Not a wrinkle on my hands yet, she thought.
The road only goes forward.


Gemma in the Waiting Room

With a steadfast faith in what was still to come,
Gemma looked through the big window
to see the next world.
She wondered if being a spectator
might be more comfortable,
but then the need to be a part of something
outweighed the fear of an uncharted course.