The fox gazed at the little prince, for a long time.
“Please–tame me!” he said.
“I want to, very much,” the prince replied. “But I have not much time. I have friends to discover, and a great many things to understand.”
“One only understands the things that one tames,” said the fox. “Men have no more time to understand anything. They buy things all ready made at the shops. But there is no shop anywhere where one can buy friendship, and so men have no friends anymore. If you want a friend, tame me…”
“What must I do, to tame you?” asked the little prince.
“You must be very patient,” replied the fox. “First you will sit down at a little distance from me–like that–in the grass. I shall look at you out of the corner of my eye, and you will say nothing. Words are the source of misunderstandings. But you will sit a little closer to me, every day…”
– The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint Exupéry
Words have been my source of exhaustion more than I’d like to admit, words read in the leaves of a book, spoken by me or you, by he or she. There is a key to closeness that you cannot hold in your pocket but comes only with your eyes or the proximity of your being. Is the missing word your or my?
It is the exhaustion that destroys me most. The places a soul goes to discover what other surroundings cannot bring have become so crowded, so loud. Such a place can be only lonely, and with such awareness, I sit a little further every day…
Me– the dog who bites his own stitches, the soldier preferring the medal to the trench, if only I were honest. Don’t be mistaken, don’t even be taken. I’m not clear, I’m not tame, I’m only wanting. Were you sitting a little closer you would know that.
But if I were asked what I really want, which pathology or awareness to return to sender, which experience to undo, which control to regain, it would be none of these. It would only be to finally be worth it– worth the silence, worth the words, worth a look from the center of your eye. Only in silence can contradiction make sense.
And so far this just isn’t making sense. I must have mistaken our roles, because I’m either directionally challenged, or the closer I sit every day brings me closer to far away. So maybe it should be you taming me.