I Found Myself in the Army of the Dead But I Didn’t Have the Courage to Say Me Hello!
The earth quaked, rocks were split, tombs were opened, and the bodies of many saints who had fallen asleep were raised. And coming forth from their tombs after his resurrection, they entered the holy city and appeared to many+
I am the tenant of a rear-view window (nod to Hitchcock) on the first floor through which I watch the near reality pass by every night like a movie, with people, cars and an umpteenth variety of means of transportation that come and go. Violet lights inside buses, flickering horror-movie bulbs, darkness, scaffolding, distant dog barking, motors, and the sound of spring drizzle giving the city slippery sidewalks.
Suddenly days ago, there appeared, on the soaked street in front of my window to the city, the dead flesh of a person who adorned the impassive daily routine with his blood. Next to my observation, the victim had been flogged multiple times, beaten and seasoned with torture. No! It wasn’t a horror movie that my eyes were facing, although it seemed like one. It was the most brutal reality. I was invaded by questions like what happens when you collide with the unexpected. Who was that person? What motivated so much anger and contempt to end that life? Who were the murderers? How can there be so much hatred towards a neighbor? Was he guilty, or maybe he was innocent?
As the window closed languidly, the murmurs of passersby and witnesses were heard. “Very little is known of the deceased.” “He was popular yet loved and hated. More hated than loved”. “He always lived on the move, from house to house, from town to town.” “He was following the rules until he decided to break them. The law was looking for him”. “He was expressive, but he always walked with the truth even if it hurt and bothered.” “They say that he had made countless powerful, influential and ready-to-do anything enemies”.
Poor man! I thought. He seemed guilty of his own death for not wanting to adjust to reality. He apparently spent his time wanting to transfigure the unchangeable and alter the course of history. In short, he failed and there lay the body of a small-time revolutionary, small-town, phony, and failure. “Only three people accompanied him on the day of his death.” “What was his name?” I heard just before the window closed drowning out all the voices. “His name was…”
Moved by morbid curiosity, I went downstairs to see his face covered by a cloak, but I couldn’t. That rebel and his words were buried with his lonely body that began the decomposition of his memory into oblivion. A day passed and the memory of him waned. The brief evocation of him was trampled on by urgency and an attempt at prayer was stopped in its tracks belittled. However, I felt a certain familiarity with the deceased, but I was taunted by the conviction of the impossibility. That executed prophet fell into nothingness. He died a leper, unpopular, discredited, and abandoned by disciples and proselytes.
Until today! What’s going on? What do I see at dawn on the third day? If he had a legacy, if he was a prophet of multitudes, what happened? What is it, what do you see? I see shapes of men. The dead have been summoned.* Resolute down the street walks the risen dead man followed by hordes of still-dead spirits who abandoned their oath to help him. I face one of those specters and I am mirrored. What have I done? What did I not do? The return of the king is nearing, and I must fulfill the promise given to be reborn.
- +Matthew, Chapter 27, 51–53
- *The Lord of the Rings. The Return of the King.