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Whip-crack Cuts, scored the Night's lassitude,

while white cotton Billows shoved aside

patches of dark, as he once more shook-out

his sheets with a fervour that belied both

the hour and the place.

cleansing his space of impurity and Djinn,

until he was sworn at, or told off, at which point,

cross-legged on his bed, he'd stare the remaining

night away, sometimes as Casper the friendly

ghost, other times as E.T.

Virtually silent, I was drawn to this man,

lost in a place that only he could be in, who

had not even a hand to hold, to anchor him

to the world proper, yet carried such peace.

The first song held no sway over him, but

on hearing the first notes of the second my

Punjabi friend shot me a viral smile!

It was a welcome infection! And we both

danced out of the moment's small joy,

whether a meet of minds or madness

mattered not, it was contact.

a smile given and returned such, is like a

hand held, and many a time when resolve

waned, and the Monsters gathered he held

mine from the far side of the ward, as we

laughed and mimed a dance, until told off,

when he would become Casper and myself

ET, the nurses shaking their heads slowly

as they turned away.

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