The reason I am so emotional about this part of my writing, I have concluded, is that although most of us have quite different backgrounds–and different outcomes–than does Richard in my novel-in-progress, we all have parts of us that have suffered extreme distress. We relate to his fears. For deep inside us, there is a secret place which we keep hidden from the world–sometimes even from ourselves. So when we read (or write) of the anxiety of others, we weep.
Conclusion of chapter 10
Richard crossed one arm over the other, and gripping himself into a cocoon he began to rock back and forth. His hands were clawed into a clench so that Sten could see the hardness of tendon and of pulsing vein. He moaned as he pitched and rolled: He was an unlit night, the dirge of a lone bagpiper on stark hill. His cry was a requiem to that unknown line of forebears who had taken to broken road, and who had given to despair and to neglect.
No one should know such agony, Sten thought as he watched the suffering of his friend. It was an epiphanic time, for at once Sten knew the room had become a birthing space. It was creation; it was a genesis. A new Richard was emerging.
Richard eased to the floor now, wrapped in himself, the keening from his mouth the sound of emergence.