From Silence to Silence
As he waved goodbye, his smiling face collapsed in exhaustion into his hands.
It’s ok…You’re ok…
It had been long. Far too long. Too beautifully, painfully long to begin to understand.
Breathe…slowly now, slowly…
He sank back into the chair, rubbing his temples. The wooden trunk before him creaked and moaned.
No, just stop…don’t…
The lid gently creaked open…
…very well, then…
Out broke a tangled network of rusted railways, humming with a cacophony of laughter, tunes, and tears. They beckoned him into himself, his inner world.
Just one…just take one…
With all the willpower he could muster, he crushed his world down to the size of a dime and balanced it on a ballpoint pen. He’d bent a few railways in the process, but at least it was all small enough that he could pretend he understood it. At least until he grabbed the first set of tracks in the tangle and began to tug.
As he slowly rolled his mind down the tracks, pulling rail by rail out of the tangle, the memories poured out on his bony fingers in a moan of relief. They burned his skin like acid as they fell, but they weren’t burning him from the inside anymore.
He had no excuse anymore. He had to untangle it.
Because he wasn’t alone anymore.
He looked to the crucifix on the wall. “Courage, dear heart…It will burn, but it is only a purging…I have already withstood these flames…”
Such a long conversation, at least in terms of its heaviness. Speaking in linear terms, it had been only a matter of minutes. But when his heart spoke, it went on murmuring for hours. It could either make the untangling delightfully easy or painfully difficult. And it always meant a new railway.
But it wasn’t something he could just stop; even as he untangled, his heart reveled in the words that passed from their lips into its lovingly prepared inner chambers. He was born to listen, to come as Simon to the crosses of others.
And yet he wondered if he would ever learn to open the wooden trunk, the doors to his inner life, before another.
“Hey, are you ok?”
No, no, no! They found it! They found you! They–
In the arms of his friend was a wooden trunk, creaking and moaning. Maybe he could–was it possible? Could anyone understand?
“Courage, dear heart…”
Could he set his world free? Let himself out?
His world began to stretch out, bend itself in a gentle arch towards this other…
…Very well, then.
“Actually, could we talk?”
“I will speak to you in the silence…but sometimes the best way to quiet your heart is to speak…Be not afraid, I have seen and redeemed your world, your life…Courage, be still…”