The Key

Twist it twice, and it’ll open.’ 
his words echoed through my mind,
Twist it twice, and it’ll open-
I repeated to myself.
Locked. One more time.
Twist it twice, and it’ll open.
Unlocked.

My fate stamped on my forehead,
I noticed a few others trying to get sight of it,
I too looked around to read their stars,
but their frowns made it hard to read.
Was I late?
Some scurried to get to the next door,
effortlessly finding the right keys,
while others sat mindlessly staring at the wall,
mentally and physically drained,their box untouched
Some were still trying to unlock the door that stood behind me,
Don’t waste time. Focus on the key!’ 
his words strangled my thoughts,
I wanted time to slow down,
I felt numb,
I was too slow to be like the fast ones,
Too fast to be like the slow ones.

I looked at the box of my name on it,
the keys were there, like he said.
Intertwined by perplexity,
I wanted to scream-
one key out of a billion,
one door to be unlocked,
his words were suddenly erased,
I forgot what he had said-
did he say red or blue?
4 minutes left-
COME ON, THINK!
Irritation pinched me.

I had forgotten how to think,
my memory was about to betray me,
Tick Tock, Tick Tock
More and more got through the door,
those who were fatigued remained on the floor,
Those who just  entered were hysterical,
this feeling made me nauseous,
YOUR TIME IS UP- roared a voice.
Smoke had filled the room,
parts of defeat clung to me,
‘I am sorry.’-
the monotonic voice failed to comfort.

While he spent years, teaching me the myriad of ways
it was my memory that failed me,
however, what he didn’t teach me was tenacity,
my biggest fear became failure,
for years, I’d memorize each word I learnt
registering it at the back of my mind,
desperately igniting the scent of evocation,
but the biggest asset, learning- was no where to be found.

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