Coming Home

‘…Lying down again, he lifts his feet up and tries for another nap. EJ walks over with a cushion. He pushes it behind his neck, closes his eyes and meditates on a passage from the book of Isaiah: ‘Comfort, comfort, O my people—’ but it’s going nowhere. Instead, a statement from Ecclesiastes comes to mind: ‘Though a man lives a thousand years twice over but doesn’t find contentment—well, what’s the use?

A scream is coming, Paddy knows that much, from somewhere deep. What he doesn’t know is when and where it will happen. Now—in the middle of a hospital—is not a good time and place. Mia and Oksy have had their fill of screams.

It will have to wait. He will have to keep the outside part of himself open for business while the inside part is swollen and bleeding, something he’s learned how to do, especially when he’s around the wrong kind of people. Not that there are any of those here.

But some screams need time: months, even years, before they find their way to the surface and are let out through a living, breathing throat. Paddy’s is buried so deep it mightn’t even make it. Most likely it will hang there in the depths, like a pregnancy, and be carried with him to heaven where all un-screamed screams get to bury their faces in the breast of their mother. He can’t believe this—quiet tears are flowing—it’s his mother he wants. He falls asleep.’ (Mia’s Magic Wand p. 418)