Soon he essentially stopped talking. "I am retreating into silence as a defensive mode," he mentioned. Eventually, he was down to uttering just five words, and only to guards: yes; no; please; thank you. "I am surprised," he wrote, "by the amount of respect this garners me. That silence intimidates puzzles me. Silence is to me normal, comfortable." Later he added, "I will admit to feeling a little contempt for those who can't keep quiet."
Excerpt from The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit
by Michael Finkel