The isolation of an individual, a couple or a group of people from the rest of society can lead to serious psychological and social damage, and a certain degree of openness is required before healing can happen. The symptoms caused by isolation often isolate the victim yet further, but social and psychological succour can be provided by considerate friends and helpers who open up the way to a better life. The story “The Cardboard Box Dressing” contains an implied request to take the plunge into a new openness which will hopefully bring healing.
The graze on his thigh kept on becoming inflamed. “No wonder,” he thought to himself, “My trousers are rubbing on it.” He put a dressing on the wound, but even though the trousers were no longer rubbing on it, the skin was still inflamed. “It’s because no air can get to it,” explained a friend. But what was he supposed to do, walk around in his underwear?
He applied another dressing, but this time he placed a small cardboard box underneath it, with the open side pointing inwards towards his thigh. Now air could get to the wound, but nothing was rubbing against it. The inflammation subsided on the very same day.