"Too hot?" he asks as I step into the water. The steam rises up in mockery of how I feel: physically unraveling, evaporating by droplets.
He can fit my whole kneecap in one of his hands. I don't push back or twist or bend. His hand squeezes pressure, easy, and I wonder how easily he would be able to shatter my bone. Pop.
I close my eyes because I am exhausted even though it is early. I am exhausted even though I fell asleep before 9pm, battered from marching and standing and processing every sign, face, close cry and distant chant, lights and food and losing light and not taking food. I did not expect to feel so empty after attending the rally all day. I did not expect to get home in the early dark and ask myself, what now?
Now his thumb presses into the arch of my foot. The nook behind my knee. The delicate indents around my ankle. I continue to be a passive recipient, even though the water is burning me. I close my eyes and pretend I am in bliss.
When does repair falter from being a necessity to being a reward? Where is the line between privilege and requirement?
I am privileged that he has his hands on me, I am privileged that this water is hot, I am privileged that I am able to close my eyes and say nothing.