Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Hear (07/08/10)
TITLE: The Heart Hears
By Betty Farrow
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My mind replays the questions the police asked. What kind of truck did my husband drive? What was his name? There has been an accident. A truck went off the ramp and exploded. I cover my ears trying to stop what is coming next. But I can’t stop the words he utters. I hear the sobs as they begin again, only this time they drown out the other noises. After awhile I hear only the sound of a siren in the distance. The sound sends waves of terror through my body, I tremble uncontrollably. My voice cries out, “Why, Why him?” I don’t know if I said the words out loud or if they were spoken only in my heart. Either way, I hear the question over and over, “Why?”
Kids are walking down the street. I hear their shoes scrape across the concrete. I hear the laughter bubbling out of their mouths, growing in volume as they get closer. Why can’t they be quiet? How can they laugh? Nothing is funny. Nothing will ever be funny again. “Stop that laughter,” I scream, but they can’t hear my heart.
I hear the gravel crunch beneath the weight of the tires and know that someone has pulled into the driveway. The door slams. I hear a voice call my name. My heart hears my husband’s voice but that can’t be. I’ll never hear his voice again. I hear my name again. This time I look. I must be seeing things. There he stands. All I can hear is the thump, pound, thump, pound from my heart. My body is shaking. I think I will faint.
He grabs me and wraps his arms around me and I hear him whisper, “I love you,” words I thought I’d never hear again. I hear his breathing as he holds me tight. I hear both our hearts pounding in tune, beating out the same beat, “he’s home, he’s home, he’s home.” I hear my voice cry out, “How?” My heart is rejoicing but my mind is confused; it can no longer take in all the sounds.
Finally the policeman’s voice penetrates through the confusion. My ears hear what he is saying. My husband …carjacked. Thief...wallet, truck, stranded…desolate country road. I hear what the policeman is saying but I can’t comprehend it. I hear his words but my head is listening to the shouting of my heart, “he’s alive, he’s alive.” I hear it over and over, “he’s alive.” My husband is shaking the policeman’s hand; the policeman is leaving.
I hear the birds singing, I hear the kids laughing. I am smiling. I am singing. I am shouting. Nothing has ever sounded sweeter than the words my husband utters as he holds me, “I love you!” I hear them in his voice and in my heart.
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