The prompt is “the stars make no noise” but it got twisted around in my head while I was pondering it over the weekend. The phrase became “because the stars do not talk” and I ended up on a kind of depressing jag. I’ve been writing some heavy stuff lately; I promise I’ll go on a happier hike tomorrow. C’est la vie sometimes.
Because the stars do not talk, no one knows about….
the five year old crouched behind his bedroom door, trying to hide so he doesn’t have to go to daddy’s
the grandmother, sole provider for a household of 12, who cooks rice at midnight for her hungry family
the young woman who sobs in her bed, awakened once again by a nightmare recalling her rape in the back of a van traveling through the desert at night
the dad who struggles to stay awake as he bundles and ties vines in the wee hours of the frosty morning, all but his hands clothed in layers of sweatshirts
the teacher who climbs into bed each night, a witness to the trauma of the 5 year old, yet unable to help with more than a hug and a safe classroom
the social worker who keeps a timer on her phone with a reminder to check on that grandmother each week
the volunteer at the YWCA who drives 60 miles round trip every Friday to meet with women, so many women, with nightmares
the pregnant wife of the man who warms his hands between her thighs when he finally sleeps, praying he won’t be in the fields when the baby decides to come
these secrets are so loud they can’t be harnessed to a prayer much less whispered to the stars