"Every angel is terrifying."
Rilke wrote this in his long Elegies, repeated several times as it moves from one part to another. One, two, three, four... I lost count.
Every angel is terrifying. I am making Rilke's word as my own. Alas, aren't we all thieves? For words, scribbles, paintings, even thoughts are all stolen from one another. As some may put it, nothing is genuine since nothing has changed. Humanity is a tragedy, while everything else is a farce.
In a corner of the world, someone is silently praying; and if I may steal Rilke's words again, it is a silent pray of a terrified soul; for every angel is terrifying.
I saw an old man standing in the rain, drenched. He was smiling while spreading his arms wide, as though he was waiting for the angel to take him away from this wretched place, as though he was embracing god, when god himself is nowhere to be found. The old man was not alone. He was surrounded by people; men, women, children, old or young, they stared at him in disbelief, like he is a madman.
His sin? Drowning himself in god's arms. But god was nowhere to be found.
And what about the men, women, and children you ask? They were all in a great hurry, pushing one another, with their umbrellas held high, scurrying towards the shelter. I was one of them.
Then the old man walked away from the plaza towards the shelter. He then stood in front of the people, in front of me, and asked: "What are you afraid of my dear children? For the terrified is the most terrifying one."
At that time, the rain has already stopped. People started to gather back at the plaza to get the first taste of sun.
"Old man, we are terrified of you," said a woman in a bluish coat.
"Old man, you are crazy," said a man in a skinny jeans.
"Old man, you could catch a cold. Please hurry and change your clothes," said a cheerful little girl before she was hush-ed by her mother.
"Old man," I stuttered, "I could not find god. It's been a long time, yet I don't miss him; not as much as I miss my mother."
He looked at me.
"Are we not a god for ourselves? For every angel is terrifying; to not be afraid of them is to be god himself."