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Refusal of the Call


The way is shut.
I woke up a few days ago with those words perched in my mind.

The way is shut.

They were familiar but I couldn’t remember from where I’d heard them.

The way is shut.

I got out of bed and walked downstairs wondering why my mind was choking on that phrase.

At the bottom of the stairs, it came to me. It was part of a quote from the movie, The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. I did an internet search and found the rest:

The way is shut.
It was made by those who are Dead.
And the Dead keep it.
The way is shut.

When my subconscious places an itch like this in my mind, I’ve learned to take heed, to sit with it and mull. Sometimes I get it. Sometimes I’m left more confused and frustrated than before. I researched a little more. Turns out, the film adaptation has used the quote from the actual book out of context and omitted the last line:

The way is shut.
It was made by those who are Dead.
And the Dead keep it.
The way is shut.
Until the time comes.

Death. I have suffered the death of my imagination. My hope and will, corpses.

Despair has me, my voice choked to only uttering the vaguest of details. I find myself without options, battling for scraps that can’t sustain me anyway. All I can focus on is the obstacles. The fear of survival swallows my creativity whole. Meanwhile, I keep breaking my heart. Over and over. No one breaks my heart more ruthlessly and often than myself.

I don’t know. I don’t know how to navigate the space between my toxic occupation that barely keeps me out of destitution and the dreams that will nourish my soul but carry no guarantee of security. I don’t know how I am going to support my son and his medical needs. I don’t have backup. It’s just me.

I tell myself if it weren’t for my son, I could make the leap fearlessly and without aid. The plans I made to protect him fell apart, the timing lost. Victories that came late appear impotent in the face of impending collapse and uncontrollable forces whom care nothing for me beyond their own benefit.

Now everything is at risk. All paths lead to looming ruin. I feel helpless. Everything is unknown. I refuse the call, paralyzed by the fear of loss.

I don’t know what to do.

With one word
One thought
An action
Pick a lock
Destroy these bars
That have me caught

I tell myself
I don’t know how
And no one else shall

Bars are what we know
Fences are what we build
Borders are what we claim
Limits define our aims
Clever creators of our own jails

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