An emotional moment whilst reading a book

Imagine you’re on a train travelling home. You’re reading a book as you always do. It’s been a long day, a day that has tested your resilience. Maybe there’s a storm brewing, a convergence of circumstances. You concentrate on the book, letting the words form in your mind and suddenly there’s a passage, a sweet configuration of words, that mysteriously draw you in. It touches you. Simple words that barely explain the reality of what you feel. Your eyes become a pair of simmering pans about to bubble over, and you remember what a miracle it is, this thing called empathy. That despite everything, despite the numb routine of the days, the ways in which you have steeled yourself against the world, the blank repetition of it all, that something inside you can still feel. You look up from the book across the seats, the tables, the people tapping at their phones, and for a moment you can see them all as they are, caught in their own worlds; living their days in the best way they can, trying to connect, trying to be good, to be loved, to be meaningful. In the distance, over the grey waters of the river, the sun’s light spreads like molten bronze along the horizon. The world is beautiful, and for once you can really feel it. You blink away the tears and marvel and the naked wonder of the world.

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