AS HE LOOKED BACK through some of his old posts he noticed that he had seriously — more like desperately than seriously — entertained the notion of “God” — entertained is an amusing word for someone who was hopelessly depressed, so depressed that he was delusional, looking for ghosts in crawlspaces, imagining voices of the dead in his head, reaching out in the darkness for his dead wife’s hand, a hand that had guided him for nearly a lifetime, reaching out for his son, reaching out for his two brothers — all of the above dead and beyond reach.
He was completely alone, an aged man in solitary confinement. So it was quite understandable that he would seek help from another sphere, realm, dimension, as-yet undiscovered wave-length, whatever the hell you want to call it — this unknown place where secretly dwells the invisible “God” that’s worshipped by more than two billion people in the world.
MEANWHILE IN THE REAL WORLD
He is still in solitary but after a year and a half of confusion and craziness, he is no longer delusional. He has returned to the real world and the first reality is that his wife is dead and his son is dead and his brothers are dead, and the second reality is that he will never see them again, hear their voices, be with them in some magical religious sense or feel their presence in this- or that- or whatever-sphere.
They are gone. Period. Full stop. In their own minds, or in their “soul” or via electrical energy there is no awareness, perception, spiritual well-being or Godly bliss. There is nothing but oblivion.
And in his mind — what’s left of it — there is the sanity-saving, mind’s-eye album of remembrance. That’s what it’s all about now — memories.
And merrily hent the stile-a:
A merry heart goes all the day,
Your sad tires in a mile-a.
Shakespeare — The Winter’s Tale (4.3.42-45)