The trouble is not that I am single and likely to stay single,
but that I am lonely and likely to stay alone. – Charlotte Bronte
Kiss Me Deadly
by Cho Young Wuk
LONELY, ALONE AND DOWN A SPIDER’S HOLE
by Kendall F. Person
Alone in a hotel room, with thousands of adoring fans just blocks away, legendary singer Phyllis Hyman could no longer stand living all alone and took her own life. Ms. Hyman suffered from depression – a killer of a mental illness – if there ever was one; and although it amplified her sense of loneliness, the condition of feeling lonely, was psychological and not literal, for she was loved.
The 1974 short film A Cipher in the Snow, chronicled the life of a physically healthy, elementary school- aged child. Cipher opened as our little boy, requested to be let off his bus. The complicit driver would adhere to the request, allowing a child to deboard, where he dropped dead in the snow. Self-absorbed parents, no friends, not even one and without a single adult in the entire village of an empty life, ever noticing the profound pain protruding from his eyes; and with no other plausible explanation, we were left with little doubt; Existing in a world that banished him to the darkside, he wished himself dead, rather than be here alone.
On December 13, 2003 a tyrant by the name of Saddam Hussein was captured in a hole. It was dark, empty and he was all alone. After years of feeding his own selfish ego, caring not for the welfare of his people, of which he was “elected” to serve. After failed invasions and the mass killing of the Kurds. After the plundering of his nation’s riches and isolating his country on the world stage, when his reign finally ended, he had distilled so little goodwill, that the only safe haven to be had, was a hole in the ground.
One felt lonely, one was left alone, and the other was abandoned down a spider’s hole, but the end of their stories, nearly identical. And although the despot did not commit suicide, he stood alone as he was executed by a nation he once ruled.
From the beginning, each could have lived a different life. Mental illness is an illness not a sickness, get help. As a community, do not ignore the empty eyes of anyone, let alone a child, for through the eyes is how the most vulnerable speak. And if we arrive at the point of self-realization, that the burning bridges in our wake, were not set by us, but the people on the other end, do not ignore the suffocating feeling of loneliness, make amends. Because alone or lonely or down a spider’s hole, is not how life should end.