He was upset, speaking about the missing years, his brothers cut off from their children, his father and grandfather cut off from their grandchildren, his brothers cut off from each other. Every way he looked there was distance and division. His eyes filled with the speaking of it, and then he was afraid of not being “strong”. Do you know how beautiful you are at this moment, I asked.
Right then his wife came along, and he, sitting in a chair, pulled her to him and buried his face in her body. Like a man drowning. She held him and stroked him.
Later, when he’d been freed from his sadness and burden, he came up to thank me for listening to him, and told me, marvelling, about how he’d been when they’d first met. It was low-key, he said, strange. We hadn’t known each other very long, and I just wanted to marry her and I said that we would get married and then we would do this and then this would happen … This was me speaking, this is how I was. I was like a lion, a king …