"I know what you are and what you will become. I know that your life will be as mine, pointless and without hope. I have seen your dreams and none of them will be realized. You will die alone, as we all do."
How many of us have felt this way at one time, or are feeling this way right now? Those few lines capture the despair of this brilliantly written piece. BROKEN ANGEL by Gary William Murning taps into the darkness that lies within all of us. For most, it only dares to show itself sometimes, but for the boys turned grown men in this story, the darkness is like another member of the family. It haunts Tom every day, and the nameless main character wears it like an accessory, spinning it into inspiration or using as fuel for hatred; at his mother, at his own insecurity...
The first line of the story: "I was eight when I saw the woman swan-dive like a broken angel from the thirtieth floor of the Caeson Building." traps the reader immediately, holding him a willing hostage in the psyche of the main character. We ride the memory as if it is our own because we have to. The author taps into our darkness and an immediate kinship is formed with the tortured souls on the page. We all have one event that sticks to our insides...sometimes changing us for the better, but sometimes not. It's all about perception.
Having been touched personally by both alcoholism and suicide, this short story stirred up many emotions. Mr. Murning shows such insight on the part of the survivor,that this reviewer has to wonder if he himself has seen such tragedy in his own life.
BROKEN ANGEL is a must read for anyone who thinks and feels deeply. I give it five bookmarks dipped in tears...for those who feel hopeless and lost.