This Didn’t Happen in Real Life

She turned to me and said, “It feels like the sky is falling. What are you supposed to do, when the sky falls?”
I looked at her eyes, (and not into them) my brain churning for the ‘right’ answer, the one that would make her smile and sigh and nestle her head into the space between my arm and my chest. I dug and found words that I was unable to speak*, so instead I sighed loudly, empathetically. She allowed the silence to continue just-too-long and, sighing in reply, tucked her head into that perfect space anyway.

*The words went something like, “Sometimes.. I think sometimes you just have to watch it fall. To watch and squint and writhe and spin the facts until you can see the moment of—not beauty, that would be too strong, too good,—but of consolation, of relative peace and hope, the seed of growth, of restoration. The grace in the arc of a falling tree, the blaze of glory in dying autumn leaves, the almost-peace in the relaxation as your loved one who suffered much passes, moments and instances of real Understanding and courage in war and tragedy, the wry humor in the fact that ten feet more or less would have prevented the crash, but that the same ten feet has separated you from many accidents that never happened.” I didn’t say them because I know now (finally) that the words never sound as good in the air as they do when they’re just neurons firing.


~ by justinhong on September 7, 2010.

5 Responses to “This Didn’t Happen in Real Life”

  1. this is great. you should write more.

  2. yup, agree.

  3. when did this happen??

  4. daaaang…i like. =)

  5. […] Heavens, June 3 7) Not quite, June 17 To Whom, To Him, June 17 9) If there were words, July 6 10) This Didn’t Happen in Real Life, September 7 11) Let’s be honest, August 25 12) Small Creatures, part I; Interlude: Soft […]

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