What Sound Looks Like

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt

This is the doorbell of a friend’s home, where I managed to crash on the couch a week or so ago while traveling. My friend wasn’t present the entire time, so I didn’t have to ring the bell when I arrived. I just used the key that had been left for me. This is an apartment I’ve visited many times, and rarely ever have I had to actually ring that bell. Usually by the time I’ve made my way up via elevator, the door has been left open a crack, my arrival having been preceded by an announcement from the doorman. On occasion I have rung it, but each time it felt like I was expressing an impatience I didn’t actually feel. I did once ring it purposefully, many years ago. Someone else, by all evidence a resident, was lingering in the hallway, and I got the sense that I was being viewed with suspicion. Pushing the doorbell provided a signal of belonging, sufficient enough that I sensed my onlooker begin to relax. I spent three nights here last week, and by the end felt a bit like a resident myself. No one visited me during my stay, so I never heard the doorbell ring. When I finally left, I had been instructed to put the key under the door. I did so and then, after a moment’s consideration, pushed the doorbell and listened as it resonated in the rooms that I was fully aware were entirely empty.

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt.

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