Golem’s Redemption

golemAnd so I sit, a small golem-like creature in the dark cavern of myself, hiding from you, even as I long for connection. I shiver in my hidey-hole – cold and alone, peaking out from the crevice and then quickly withdrawing, lest I be seen.

My fingers are as cold as the stone they touch. My heart has lost its beat, my eyes, grown large, are still afraid to see. I huddle in my corner, closing my eyes and holding my hands over my ears, until I can stand it no more.

I rouse myself, listening with all I am, and creep from my hole. I am drawn, irresistibly, toward a faint glow at the far corner of my vision. I crawl furtively, from rock to rock, in bursts and halting pauses until, rounding one corner, I can see a full beam of light fall across the floor in the distance.

It calls me and it fills me with fear. I need the light to see – but somehow I know that the light also sees me.

At last I come close. I am quivering, one shadow away. I hide behind the last great rock that stands between me and the opening of the cave. I reach one gray finger toward the beam, and, with the touch of the light – it turns to flesh! I find I have pulled it back in amazement and, in the shadows, it once again looks gray and bony.

I push toward the light once more. My whole hand finds flesh and I feel the warmth of sun upon skin. I ease myself around the rock, eyes closed, so that I stand fully in the light. My back touches cold stone, but my face feels the heat of life. I’m breathing hard.

Because I’ve closed my eyes I know that it is not anything outside myself that scares me most – else my eyes would be open, searching. Instead, I somehow hope to touch the light without having to really see myself – without having to be revealed. Like the small child who thinks that, in hiding their eyes, they are hidden.

But then I feel your kiss upon my cheek. You’d think I would be startled by that touch, but instead, I melt. It is tears that shield my vision, now. I feel your full embrace. You pull me to yourself.

Somehow I know that it is the light that gives me flesh. I cannot be me, alone. And the emptiness I feel is the natural state of separation. If I think I must bring wholeness to the encounter, I fool myself. There is no wholeness possible in isolation.

Even you cannot, will not, make that miracle – that is not the call of life. Life is in connection. When will I learn? When will I hold that lesson firm?

When you hold me.

[photo by LHG Creative Photography per cc 2.0]
[read a story of the golem by A. Stephenson]

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