Dedicated to Thomas E. Heydel
This short story came out on a writing workshop in november 2011 with Lisa Friedman in Amsterdam. The homework was to create a very short story based on a real experience. The trigger that was supposed to inspire our writing was a song.
I can't recall the song, but the first few words were about thorns in the heart. Oh well I said what did hurt me was certainly the story with Thomas. So here it is. Short, concise and very to the point. It doesn't need more words. I already wrote too many for him.

"I wish the memory of that friend was not stinging so much in my heart. It was for long time a thorn ripping me apart, bringing me to bleed in silence, with my soul imprisoned behind steel bar. This is how I felt when my heart and my pen were pouring out words of encouragement, support, inspiration and love. Anything to make his loneliness if not disappear at least to soften its grasp. To make him feel loved. It was as if my chest was too small to hold the wave of warmth in my heart. A fire from within that could not be contained or controlled. It hurt and I surrendered.
Little did I know when I received his first letter pleading for help, a scream from prison to come and rescue him. Little did I know that that letter became the first of thousand emails heavily scrutinized, that we exchanged on prison terms. Maybe I knew somewhere inside I was embarking on one of the most mystical experience ever in my life. It was one of the most inspiring, rich and rewarding time in writing. Every words I read from him or that I wrote to him was breathing its own life jumping out of the page and kissing our essence. I was warned by Viktor E. Frankl book  “Man’s search for meaning”. However I say yes. He promised me the moon and yet he was not even able to come and see me upon his release. He swore eternal gratitude and called me angel and sweetheart, and yet he forgot me completely without a simple thank you eye to eye.
The only time I saw him was two years before he was sentenced to 22 months in a Federal prison, when on its way to Germany he asked me to stay in mine and my husband’s place in Amsterdam.
I could never have imagined that I would find a very special form of love in a dungeon. Although I was never in prison I had a deep sense of how he was feeling inside that black hole. Day and night my life went for a rollercoaster drive, or perhaps on a magic carpet, forgetting time’s zone or even to sleep. Soon I found myself involved in the most exquisite love affair without the earthly sexual aspect. It was as if we both were wrapped around a gentle rosy cloud, where even the stinking latrine of his cell smelled of cookies, cinnamon and baked apples.
And this is how I like to remember him. A friend that asked for help and my hand stretched out to offer it. Never mind the pain that came with it. I have my own quote to help me through that:

Few days ago in august 2012 on the third anniversary of  the day Thomas came out of prison I took all of his hand written cards  he sent me from prison and HWH and burned them in a fire. And once again I felt liberated. What was really happening cannot be forgotten.