"Those were hard things for me to come by, and I offer them to you for what they may be worth." - Toby Wolff

Monday, January 2, 2012

Weak Link

The old woman bent to her task, gnarled hand trailing the chain
her fingers longing over each link
as if an instrument she played,
and each note out of tune required an effort greater than she felt she had.
But to discontinue was to begin again.

"What are you doing?" asked the boy.

"Looking for weak links" she replied wearily.
It was back breaking work, though it looked like a stroll.
There were those who assumed she just wanted to walk
and behind their hands they whispered conspiracies.

"Looks fine to me," said the boy.

"Does to most," replied the old woman
annoyed at the intrusion
for every derailment added to time.

"Then why don't you just let it be?" asked the boy, chewing a hangnail that would require a bloody freedom.

The old woman sighed, turned to the boy..."Because things are getting in which should stay out, and things that should stay out are getting in. Nothing knows its place anymore."

The boy shook his head. "Old woman...you're wasting your time. Everyone who sees that chain thinks it's strong enough."

She put her hands on her hips. "Which is exactly the problem. Everyone stops and requires an explanation for something they simply cannot see. It only delays the task. Leave me to it Boy, I need to do this alone."

"Why alone?" asked the boy as he turned to go.

"No one else believes in the mission" she said quietly.

He did not hear. He was not meant to.


  1. Only we know our weakest points yet to share this experience with others is equally brave, as it inspires others to examine their own obstacles. Today i had a quiet morning and wrote in my journal, ready to leave last year behind...while i felt this peace, my dear friend died and my world is not the same. But she was a gift - and that i had the chance to tell her i loved her gave me all i needed to get through this. All i can hope is that through everything you're able to see the beauty in the strength of your links and how many are cheering for you.

  2. Annie, This could be the prolouge to a good Fantacy novel...If you want I will collaborate with you on it...

  3. I hope this happens Wander. I'd love to read a novel from you too :)

  4. I wonder sometimes why it is we spurn weakness so ... why we see strength as such a laudable characteristic.

    If the bible is to be believed God saw virtue in weakness. So much so that God became God Incarnate. Thus redemption through faith becomes a possibility for anyone surrendering themselves to such belief.

    When I rely on my own strength which is something I do far too often, I miss something essential. It is an exercise in healthy humility to understand that there are times when my strength is also my weakness. Two sides of the same coin. I think this is all the more so in matters of faith.

    Love you Annie. xx Jos

  5. Good point you make Jos. God can strengthen the weakness. Shame in weakness is something we put on ourselves. I heard once that "Strength is nothing more than how well you hide the pain." That's certainly part of it and so much more. Our own strength and power only goes so far. We quickly reach the end of it.

  6. doubters can contaminate. i agree. there's a weird, special energy to doing some tasks alone. universes colliding have deep impacts sometimes, even briefly.

  7. i could read it again and again and discover something new each time. in fact, i think this is exactly what i will do.

    my first time through i wonder why she needs to do this work. there is great strength in weakness.


  8. Hmmm, a parable of sorts. It is often only those closest to the wink link who know things are entering and exiting that shouldn't be. Hard work--repairing, admitting, reviewing. It is hopeful that she knows there is weakness. There always is. Fortunately, not everyone is meant to hear of it!

  9. Interesting allegory. Those who watch us pick away at our weak links are indeed immature little boys.

    I love the phrase, "...longing over each link."

  10. I can see the aged lady proding along. The mission belongs to her, and no other. Lovely.

    And, though I wouldn't have thought of it, Erin is right...there is strength in weakness.



Thank you for listening.