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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Outlook (06/02/11)

TITLE: His Soft Voice
By Sara Harricharan


It pains me.

The more I think about it, the more I try to understand it, the harder I resist it. I can’t help it. It still hurts when I remember. I shouldn’t be tangled up in knots from the past at the mercy of my history that is nothing more than a memory, but somehow I am.

It is burning and twisting through me until it is a muddled mess somewhere in the pit of my stomach, leaving my head completely confused and my heart not far behind. If I try to attach logical human thought processes to something this overwhelmingly amazing, the puzzle is entirely unsolvable, yet if I wash it in the blinding understanding glow of His love, the answer remains.

The monsters of my past are creatures of darkness taunting me, haunting me and trying to possess me even as I am lifted high above their claims and holds. Even as the hands that lift me from such misery and despair are hands large enough to cradle the universe. In the clutch of such majesty, if I dare to look down to see where I’ve come from, inevitably I feel my focus beginning to waver as my soul trembles.

Facing Him in the midst of everything is all I need to do, no matter how many times these trying eyes of mine wander, it is always the softest, gentlest of reminders that coaxes me back to gaze upon His face. I know. I understand. And I feel what I must do so very clearly that it pains me when I know I am not yet where I should be.

One foot in the doorway of promise and hope, the other in the clutches of sorrow and history, I am a sorry sight for anyone. But there is nothing condemning in the eyes that hold my own, a steady stare that penetrates into my very being, even as I am still thinking in directions I should not. Because if I close my eyes, I can see it, taste it and almost smell it.

Despair, darkness, torrid blackness.

I deserve it for all that I have done. Even the scars that seem carved and etched into my very bones are not penance enough for the grievances I have dared to commit, thinking I had all right. I should not have been saved, not one as tainted as I.

Such dreary, bleak outlook.

But I cannot seem to stop myself from such thoughts and it pains me.

Tears are a matter of course that has their way with me, sucking the moisture from my body to expel it in hot, bitter trails down my cheeks and splashing to the ground of nothingness. I am alone in this white light where nothing is visible and nothing is forgotten, because I can remember so vividly all that I have done.

Every did these hands have committed replay before my eyes in a slow-motion, painstakingly detailed reconstruction of something I can barely stand to watch. I do not want this. I definitely do not want this, but I feel so unworthy of everything that He offers me.

It is almost as if it is so high that it would be out of reach. It has to be. Nothing like that can possibly be for such a low creature as myself.

Hush child…

The voice is tantalizingly soft and sweet.

Enough, leave.

It is a command, but somehow it is directed at something else, someone else, someone who is not me.

Suddenly, I can feel it, a thick, slimy curtain of something so dark and terrible, I cannot breathe. It is crushing me, consuming me and in the same instant, it is pulled away and thrown aside.

Warmth floods through me, light filling every broken, tear-stained crevice and I know that I will be too weak to argue with myself any longer. If this is mercy, then I embrace it. I have nothing left to lose and only myself to give.

I love you, my child.

This soft, sweet voice is filled with all the warmth, hope and gentleness I could ever dream of. Peace is settling over the ragged, raw senses of my exhausted body in soothing, wispy waves that give me courage to lift my head, to lift my face, to look at Him.

My old heart is blissfully torn apart and a new one is fused together in a single breath.

If this is love, then I am drowning.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Beth LaBuff 06/14/11
Your inner conflict, dialog and emotion are tangible in your story. Well done.
Joanne Sher 06/14/11
Amazingly powerful and absolutely engaging. Beautiful.