Those Who Cannot Speak

English 12B Two Page Memoir


Nicole Siembor

Maddy Deward

Maddy Deward

Perhaps those who cannot speak see more than those who can. 

Those eyes were tired and weary. For years before, they were a source of identification and a pathway to the life within. Day and night, the chin below the eyes rested on the window’s apron in the living room. Even in the dark when there was nothing to be seen. 

Those eyes had seen the wind fly by a car’s lowered window. They had experienced the thrilling splashes in the lake water after a long hike down 100 wooden steps. They had bathed in beams of the shining sun, while the television roared with a stadium of applause following a touchdown. The cloudy umber at the entrance of his soul had welcomed so many sights before reaching the end. They were not once able to express a thought that crossed their mind. They never flowed tears at the expense of a good day. All things considered, those eyes had done no wrong in the path of four feet which trailed behind them. Perhaps those eyes could see more than what lived outside the oak-framed window. Perhaps they could see more than my eyes could. 

I could not help but wonder, what does the mind of a mute soul think? When a butterfly takes wing, does he, too, wish he could fly? When the rain patters on the window’s exterior, does he daydream of being on the other side? When he does something shameful, is he brimming with guilt? Or does he only cower for show? 

There was another pair of eyes living within the same four walls. These eyes were smaller, and similar to the color of bright moss after a fresh season of spring. Her eyes were rewarded with a sense of comfort while resting against the wise, old soul. She disliked everything in the world, it seemed, besides him. 

The last days of those two eyes were spent far from the oak ledge. They were often closed as his feeble body rested, inhaling and exhaling the heavy air. His dinner lost its appeal, and fresh water lost its value. Perhaps he knew that the number of sights within his own two eyes were ceasing. Perhaps he knew nothing, and continued to daydream about splashing in the lake and leaning out of a car window. 

One morning, there were no dusky brown eyes gazing out of the window. They were not on the ground either. The sound of a struggle to breathe had diminished, and the air had become much louder through its silence. The emptiness at the window spoke excruciating volumes of grief.

But now, there was another soul to take his place at the wooden-framed glass. The green eyes gazed at the landscape. It was a faultless replication of the eyes who were once there. These eyes replaced the feeling of substantial emptiness within the room. It seemed as though her eyes contained a sense of understanding for the absence of her friend. Perhaps she, too, found such mesmerizing things to appreciate on the other side of the glass. 

Therefore, it must be true that those who cannot speak see more than those who can.