He stopped trying long ago.
The only reason he spoke to himself was to get the ideas out of his head, out into the open, into the light of day where they didn’t seem so massive. Adding sunlight to drive the shadow away. No one else could understand him, but maybe he could speak the words, give them weight so he could wrestle them.
The worst part was that he didn’t understand them either. The words were just there, in his head, unbidden.
Speaking them aloud didn’t help. It just drove people away. He saw how people looked at him. He saw them cross the street when they saw him come towards them on the sidewalk, or, if they couldn’t cross the street, find something fascinating to look at anywhere he wasn’t.
They had nothing to worry about from him. He’d given up on them years earlier.
There were times he thought himself crazy, wished that he was. He tried to convince himself that the problem was in his head. An accident of biochemistry.
He tried writing the words out, first on paper, but then on larger and larger canvases, until he was working with spray paint on walls.
He’d stand back and look, but the words still made no sense.
He didn’t speak their language. There were times when he wondered if he spoke any language at all.