Hand Of Light

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A short story entered into the Hope*Writers Writing Challenge that took place from May 10-16, 2021 on Instagram. The first version can be found on Instagram @ReneWilburCalleja, renecalleja011404, or #hopewriterlife. The original and extended version can be found on Wattpad (@ReneWilburCalleja) and Inkitt.

Poetry / Other
Rene Wilbur Calleja
Age Rating:


“Why do you say nothing?” He spoke. His voice echoed throughout the darkroom as he waited for my response. His presence was calming and his words always brought life to my soul.

I opened my eyes. Again, realizing I was in the same spot as before. The candles flickered on the stand and the computer screen starred blankly at me. Not a single word was written. There was never a time a word was placed on it. Whatever I thought. Whenever I spoke. It never came out right. I was just stuck.

Every day . . . it was the same. I lit every candle I had and set them throughout the room. I turned off the lights and turned on the computer to start a page. The images were in my head but I could never transfer them to paper. My eyes grew sore with each moment I had looked at this bright screen. For hours I would sit and wonder why it was so hard. Why I could never move forward. Then, I would eventually fall asleep and hope my dreams would give me a nudge. But they never did.

“Why do you say nothing?” He asked again. He waited patiently with a grace-like posture that gave me a relieving feeling like he would wait forever.

He was never pushy or rude. He could be soft and firm with his voice. He knew when to stay silent and when to speak. He was only a gentleman with only compassion in his eyes.

“I feel stuck,” I said slowly. “What could I say? What do they want to hear? What would catch their attention and make them consider what I have to say is important?”

My hands slowly curled into fists. They sat on my keyboard as I tried to remind myself of the harsh reality of this world. “I feel ridiculous. I feel stuck,” I continued. “How do I speak the truth when I only receive judgment? I repeat myself day after day and yet they never stopped to think. When I speak, I’m ignored. When I share my words, I am laughed at. When I share my voice with the world, they say I’m insignificant. How do I share my voice in a world that only wants to make noise?”

I turned to look at him and starred pitifully into his eyes. “How?”

I couldn’t stop the tears. In front of others, I would’ve been embarrassed. But never with him. He had never laughed or turned away from my pain. He always listened and showed everlasting love to whoever called his name.

He continued to wait in silence and stood with the boldness of a lion. Most would’ve thought he was thinking about what he was going to say but he knew. He knew what needed to be said before I had even asked the question.

He walked towards me. He lifted the computer from my lap and put it to the side. He showed me his hands as an invitation to trust him. I didn’t move for a moment and wondered if I even deserved his aid. Then, I remembered all he had done for me. All the times I had been at my worst and he chose to stay. It still tore my heart every time he called me his.

I hesitantly placed my hands in his and he pulled me up to a stand. He spoke softly, “Aren’t you made with a set of strengths and weaknesses? Gifts and skillsets only you know? A perspective and a unique experience that the world needs to hear? If we were all the same, would we have any hope to learn something different? Doing the same thing over and over again.

“That is not how you were created to be. You’re the only one with the set of tools to do what you’ve been called to do. Just because your sword looks shorter than the rest, doesn’t mean it won’t fulfill its function. Just because you have a hammer, doesn’t mean it can’t work like the rest of the tools. Your voice was built to stand out! To have a different noise! Why do you continue to be afraid when you know I am with you. Say something! For there is at least one person listening.”

His words hit me. They struck the core of my being like a barrier was shattered. Glass that I had thought could never be broken, was now falling before my eyes. I was breathless as I digested what he had given me. I knew what my voice was now. I knew what to do. I just had to say it.

I wrote for hours that night and for many years more. Page after page of words. It came like a waterfall that overfilled a riverbank. My fingers were never fast enough to keep up with the trains of thought that coursed through my mind. My voice was everywhere yet simple to understand. Calm and clear the paragraphs on the pages became. Even when my computer died, it couldn’t stop me. I wrote on over thousand papers. One by one they stacked and filled the room. My hands yelled at me to stop and take a break but I couldn’t. The barriers of my mind were torn down and I was coming in with a voice of a lion.

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