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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Bridge (07/31/08)

TITLE: Span of Silence
By william price


I never felt betrayal until your bullet made me bleed. Even then, with everything I ever believed leaking into my hands, I hoped I was dreaming. With my final breath, I cried out in disbelief.

God must have been tired of listening to my denials, because I died before I could make another excuse for you.

Fortunately, I was dreaming, but the stench of your treason burned in my nostrils for days. I was amazed I wasn’t afraid, or even concerned with dying. The disbelief that you could have pointed that gun at my heart and pulled the trigger without a blink of an eye staggered my senses.

The dream was so real. The scent of Tresor perfume made my heart skip a beat as my mind drifted back to when we first met. I was about to tell you I still loved you when I felt something cold and foreign press against my chest.

“What’s this?”

You didn’t answer; not a word. A sound never came forth from your mouth. Your lips didn’t even twitch as you began to pull the trigger. The pupils of your eyes didn’t even grow when darkness swallowed your soul and the pop of the gun dropped me to my knees.

The last time I was on my knees before you, I was proposing.

Like I said, it was a dream. And, now I stand here in the middle of the night talking to you like you were right next to me. I guess I am a little crazy.

I always liked this old bridge. Even in the moonlight I can remember our first kiss, right here where I’m standing now. Of course, it was daytime then. The river was rippling swift between the rocks below, the breeze was bristling through the pines and your breath was so warm and lips so soft, I thought I died and went to Heaven. Ha, what an expression, eh? If I only knew then.

I proposed here too. I thought it was appropriate. I lived to the east on a small dairy farm and you in the city to the west. I thought we would be so happy.

You know, I was out here last night too, but on the other side of the bridge; the side you threw my wedding ring from. Yes, I was depressed. I couldn’t find a way to wrap my head around your cold heart. I thought I knew grief when our daughter had died, but I was comforted then with Heaven. But, where does dead love go? I didn’t know it could die. Where’s the salvation? I felt alone, empty and cold. I pulled a pistol out of my pocket.

It was then, holding the gun, I heard a howl raging from the darkness on the other side of the bridge. I wasn’t sure if it was an injured animal in great distress, or the echo of my own soul. But, I heard it clear as day.

“Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?”

The cry gave me goose bumps. Never have I heard such passion. The gun dropped from my hands as I walked to the other side of the bridge. I listened again; nothing. And there was a great span of silence that followed the cry. I walked home; haunted by, “Eli Eli, lama sabachthani?”

The next morning, in the quietness of my bedroom, I had an epiphany, an awakening, a visitation of grace. It was like somebody rolled a huge stone away from my window and this bright light rushed in like a spring mountain stream. And there was this voice.

“My son, my son, I have not forsaken you.”

It all came back to me then. All the years of Sunday school in the city flashed back through my mind. I remember Jesus’ final words on the cross. In a much deeper way, He knew how I felt.

So, here I am, back on the bridge. I know you are not here, but I want to say that I love you and ask that you forgive me. And even though the span of silence since you left has been long, I want you to know that I pray God’s grace finds you too. He has not forsaken you. And I ask that God lead you to the bridge that takes you back to Him.

In Jesus name, Amen.

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This article has been read 877 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Joanne Sher 08/07/08
Absolutely evocative and incredible descriptions. I was absolutely taken away with you. I felt this in every fiber of my being. Just masterful. Wow.
Loren T. Lowery08/07/08
Quiet, restrained emotions, beautifully written, beautifully expressed.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/10/08
Your story of redemption holds an awesome emotional appeal.
Pat Guy 08/11/08
Oh Bill, it's so good to read your work again. Thanks for this journey into the reality of emotions and into the reality that God is there. It's been awhile huh my friend?
Joanney Uthe08/11/08
The dream at the beginning is a powerful image and makes the redemption of the piece all the more powerful. Thanks for writiing through the pain.
Edy T Johnson 08/11/08
This writing is as good as it gets. The incredible emotional drama holds this reader spellbound. Whenever I encounter writing like this, I have to re-read it in bite-size chunks, relishing how words can have such impact when handled by a master communicator. You have a magical gift, SirWilliam.
Shirley McClay 08/11/08
Wow... amazing. I want to write this and then go read it again.

My favorite lines were...

"The next morning, in the quietness of my bedroom, I had an epiphany, an awakening, a visitation of grace. It was like somebody rolled a huge stone away from my window and this bright light rushed in like a spring mountain stream. And there was this voice."

T. F. Chezum08/11/08
Very well written, riveting story.
Mariane Holbrook 08/11/08
William, you're so good. Everything you write is so well done that it keeps me wanting more. You have been such an encouragement to me (several months ago critiquing a piece for me that was so helpful)and I appreciated the kind comment you made on my entry this time, too. What a blessing you and your writings are!
Joshua Janoski08/12/08
Sir William is back and in full force! What can I say? This piece left me speechless. I as completely pulled into this story. I could almost picture it as being a film noire type story even though it wasn't. I could see it all happening in black and white with the MC narrating his thoughts and feelings on the bridge.

Awesome! Simply awesome!
M. R. Davenport08/12/08
You would do very well writing detective stories...give Spillane a run for his money. It was a little rushed in the end (as most good ones are to stay under the limit). An emotional rollercoaster, yet calmly presented...Does that make sense? Very well done.
LauraLee Shaw08/12/08
Wow. I have not felt emotion this deep in a long time. Crying. Goosebumps. wow.
Betty Castleberry08/13/08
I honestly want to comment, but I just don't know what to say. Powerful? Overused. Brilliant? Too cliche. Great writing? Not strong enough for this piece.
Five stars from me.
Helen Dowd08/13/08
Spell binding story. A true masterpiece full of suspense to the end. I am sure you will place high. You truly belong in Masters...Helen
Carole Robishaw 08/13/08
I really don't think there is any more to be added to the comments already made. I was totally pulled int this. I wasn't ready for it to end.
Beckie Stewart08/13/08
I agree with the others. I was there, in the scene, and sensing the reality of the emotions felt.
Lyn Churchyard08/13/08
Sir William, it is so good to be reading your entries again, and this one was spellbindingly brilliant; gave me goosebumps. One of the absolute best I've read this week.
Dee Yoder 08/14/08
Lovely, bittersweet tribute and prayer to a lost love. Very well written and described. Touching.
LaNaye Perkins08/14/08
Sir William, you did an aweome job of writing this piece! What a refreshing message of hope in the midst of darkness and pain. Well done my friend, well done.
Betsy Markman08/14/08
I, too, wish I had better words to write here. I'll have to come back and read this again, because there's too much in it to grasp it all at the first go. Compellingly done.