The actors take their places as the curtain slowly rises, Act 1 Scene1, the sun slowly brightens on the horizon, the mist disperses to reveal the city. An old man walks his dog through the streets, bustling with people, their heads down looking into a world compressed onto a tiny screen. Earbuds isolate them from each other, a cocoon to protect them from the pains and failures that exist. Steam from the train rises as it is fed the hopes and wishes of humanity, filling the seats as they stare out onto the grey, cold cityscape. I read this sentence, “The relentless literalism and pragmatism of the fundamentalist stem from a fear of mystery, of the ambiguity of Holy Saturday.” The cocoon like state helps to hide us from the mystery, a fundamentalism born out of a technological world, seeing in black and white, while life grasps for answers. Souls tied up, bound with strips of metaphorical bindings unable to see beyond the horizon, lost in a seascape of fear.
The human tide is disgorged as they enter the station, the hordes bump and weave their way trying not to make eye contact. The earbuds muffle the brighter sounds of the birds caught up in the rafters as they make homes from the scraps left behind. Somewhere in the midst of this there is one seeking to be heard, a poet scans the scenery and writes what she sees in their faces. The words pour out of her own deep longing for connection to that mystery that lies just beyond her grasp. The scuffling of feet moving towards the escalators as they are taken up and out into the busy streets, there the old man, his vision dimmed by the years, watches. His heart heavy with the burden of loss. To the masses walking through he is a living wraith, a mist they fly by. His face holding their future, too horrible to contend with as they hurry along escaping from the fears the hound their every step.
Her poem speaks of loss, of love, of the deep need to enter into the mystery. Her words are not eloquent, but raw, as raw as her own pain she carries each day. She writes and her tears water the gray tiles, the mystery too powerful to be handled by a lonely heart as she reaches out to the world. The old man sits next to her, his face lined with a life lived, and in those lines she sees hope and the words flow as her heart sings, mystery enfleshed in the bustling humanity, in an old mans worn face.