Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Whispers floated through the window out of the inky blackness beyond, our only warning that they were upon us. Cracking of paint crusted windows pried forcibly open, echoed up the stairwell. Shadows played in the alley between the houses, hushed huddled bodies peering into our home.

Fingers wrapped tightly around the base of the bat, my sword to fend off encroaching goblins. Bare toes find purchase in the long hairs of carpet on the steps, as lances of light pierced the open air of the living room marking my progress. The sucking slide of swelled wood as the window slid open, hastened my steps. Slipping silently through an adjoining room, the blinds began to shiver with movement.

Hot breath fetid with alcohol wafted like a dense fog, as hands scrambled for purchase on the windowsill. Emerging from the morass, the menacing head poked through, casting yellowed eyes to and fro, greedily searching for prey. Eyes met at arms length, lips curled in a warning snarl. Pupils dilated wildly in alarm as "Louisville" etched across their forehead,sending the intruder pin wheeling into the arms of his cohorts. 

Howls receded as they dragged him limp between them, disappearing in the evening mist.

What makes a man so desperate as to break into another home? Leaving any sense of safety and solace violated on the floor amid the debris left behind? We respond with shock and dismay at the brazenness of thieves, rifling through others lives, taking that which can never be replaced.

Sometimes I feel this way with the kids I counsel. Their lives ransacked with words spoke in carelessness, they crawl back into themselves looking once more for that place of safety. Worthless. Little. Baby. Won't you ever learn. How Dumb are you. Why can't you do it right for once. Their hope for happiness, traded for the satisfaction of just being numb. 

Words become burglars, when used to steal lives.


Mrsupole said...

Hi Brian,

I loved this story, and yes words can hurt sometimes more than anything else. Bruises will heal, cuts will heal, but words can stay with someone forever. We just have to learn that we can remove those words from our mind forever. That is our only defense. Someone needs to replace the bad, hurtful words with ones of love and kindness. Then teach the person that these are the words to hold dear to our hearts.

God bless.

PS...I hope you and everyone here will read the comment I received today from an Iranian girl about "The Freedom Seed". Her name is Shiva. It will break your heart to read it and at the same time make one happy to hear that it reached someone from that country and I do hope it makes a difference, at least for one Iranian. Thank you so much for trying to help reachout to them and others.

Wings said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wings said...

So true. And the items words steal are much, much hard to replace than material things. Very good piece.

Verily I go. said...

I hate too, not allowed but do, the words lashed at a child. Idiots, drunken. Counsel, so protected to know. Brian@@@@@@@ awesome. My heart breaks here. WE had to learn. Can WE not dish it out?

Joanna Jenkins said...

I held my breath as I read your words. Then I let out a big sigh.
Wonderful post. Thank you.

subtorp77 said...

Nice post Brian and so true. Mom used to work at a place called "Devereaux", here in MASS. What some of those kids were going through, I can only imagine. The part about "crawling back into themselves..."; that would sum it up for most of the ones she had to deal with( she was one of the watchers and not a therapist but still had to know a great bit to be able to work with them ).

Candie Bracci said...

Beautiful words once again and so true.Words are a powerful sword that might be use cautiously(it's unfortunately not the case some days,when extreme energies,like anger ect.. takes over,mistakes might be done,I know).This is a sword you know how to use really wisely,it always falls perfectly.A pleasure to read you everyday.

Lorraine said...

You have this way with words of first making me smile and then breaking my heart. Words are swords, and yours soothe, I'm so glad these children have you. I once wrote that whoever had said 'Sticks and Stones can break my bones...but words will never hurt me' or something to that effect must have been deaf...

Travel & Dive Girl said...

You have a great talent of actually putting me in the moment. Great post - thanks.

imac said...

Edge of seat stuff Brian.great post.

Thanks fgor your visit and kind comments.

Valerie said...

When did you say your book would be published? Brian, I thank you for letting us see your amazing talent. Yes words can be swords, but your sword is a healer not a hurter.

Cinnamon said...

I echo all of the praise above.

As a parent I have found it difficult to hold back with negative comments and have had to try hard to fine positive things to say sometimes in our family conflicts. Your image of a word-burglars will help me here!

Brian Miller said...

@cinnamon - we as parents have a great power in how we shape our kids vision of who they are becoming. There are difficult times, but all great labors have them. ty.

@valerie - our tongues have amazing power to give or take life, each day. ty.

@imac - great job on your POTD! ty.

@travel - ty. enjoyed your post today and congrats ont he anniversary! wishing you many more!

@lorraine - would agree they must have been deaf. oh that i could control mine at times.

@candi - you make me blush. smiles. i take so much from all those i read eacch day, your included.

@subtorp - its heavy work, carrying others burdens at times but i love the kids and believe even inthe most extreme cases, it brings a little light.

@joanna - ty. smiles.

@verily - We had to learn, yes. nice rant. smiles.

@wings - things we can never give back...

@mrsu - on my way over now to check out the comments. can't wait!
hard work replacing all the words, especially when they are engraved on the soul. but a good labor.

bradpost said...

Great post Brian!

Lola said...


Wonderful writing Brian, I am always startled when I leave here, because you paint such real pictures with your sword- I mean, words.

Poetic. True. Honest.

That's it! There is no deception, even in the twisted ending pieces, or the tricky ones. It's all out there, making our brains work a little harder.

Those kids are blessed to have you.

Baino said...

You are my morning philosopher! There's many a word I wish I hadn't uttered believe me!

Daniel said...

Based on a true story I suppose. I noticed that ash makes a great dull thud when used on the melons of others (at least when wielded by a professional). Scary, violating stuff. The twist, the different point of view of the story also nice.

Otin said...

Words can definitely scar a child! You say that you have not bitten on the rhyming thing, but truthfully, your writing itself is almost poetic!

Lover of Life/ Nancy said...

Beautifully written, Brian. You are a very soulful person. You brought us from being disgusted by the intruder to wondering what life brought him to such an act.