The Linnet's Wings The Winter´s Tale, Ravens and Robins - Page 59

Ravens and Robins at rock formations. He tells me more than once, he swears he sees baby Jesus and his mother cradling him in the silver ore etchings. He says that her husband, Joseph, with the shepherds, is there, too, all the while his ears are ringing with voices, angelic ones. He shakes his head, and says the song is still there. and so is the creche. Earth shifts again, the mine rains dust, hails more debris. He closes his eyes and prays out loud this time with hands raised. Through the thin films of his eyelids, a red glow burns, then flashes to brilliant white. He calls out to his wife, voice breaking, over and over again. He says he thinks he’s going straight to the other side. When he opens his eyes, he sees the dark ceiling of the mineshaft cracked- open to the sky with the bright silver sun pouring in. Rescue workers free him and his men. He never much believed in prayer before that. When the train finally leaves, steam and coal soot dance in swirls of wind. For a moment, he sees the beautiful shapes of promises, the hope 59