The Park - Part II
The story until now…The Park sees many people come and go. So do we.
A girl is sitting on the park bench. She feels the world has been unfair to her. And she’s complaining. But who is going to listen? The one person she expects will listen, is not in the mood to listen. Or…?- - - - - -
(contd. from The Park – Part 1)Nobody said a word for sometime. She was still letting her tears get the better of her self-control and he was letting his self-control get the better of him. Maintaining the stoic face, he walked for a couple of minutes until they reached the Couples’ Corner of the park. He stopped and turned to face her.“What do you see?”“Is that a trick question?”
“No. Seriously, tell me, what do you see?”
“I see people. In love. Sitting beside their beloved. Knowing that they will be together for eternity.”
“How many of them will really be together for eternity?”
“I don’t know.”
He smiled. He pointed out to a couple sitting across the park. The wife (presumably) was happily knitting away for a near-future arrival (presumably). The husband was watching her intently, with a look that was somewhere between admiration and awe.
“Only they will be together for all eternity.”
“How do you know?”
“It’s my job to know.”
“But they are not even talking to each other!”
“Someday, when you are old enough and wise enough, you’ll understand that communication does not need words. Tell me what do you read in his eyes?”
“I don’t know. I can’t see them from this far.”
“Then go near him and read his eyes. Go now.”
“But what if he sees me? What am I going to say to him?”
She hesitated for a split second and started to move towards them. Thoughts had begun to flood her mind. Was he testing her? Or was it all a joke? Was he serious? What if the husband caught her looking at them? What would he think? Would he question her? More importantly, what was she going to tell him?
As she approached closer she could feel her tension rise. But he made no apparent move to acknowledge her in any manner – hostile or other wise. Somewhat puzzled and somewhat relaxed she decided to push further, until she was virtually sitting beside him.
She could hear the faint strains of humming. She looked around and found her; humming away as she wove the woolen strands into a concrete shape, thread by thread, knot by knot. For a moment she forgot what she was supposed to do and listened deeply to her humming. Then she remembered why she was there, and she turned to look at him.
He was now leaning back with his eyes closed and his hands behind his head. She waited for a few moments hoping he would open his eyes, so she could read them. But he did none of that. A few moments later, he opened his eyes and moved over to where his wife was sitting and put his head in her lap and closed his eyes again.
Those few moments were all she was waiting for. And what she saw chilled her to the very core.
He was blind. He had only the whites of his pupils where his eyes would have been.
She hurried back to him. He looked at her. She was shivering like an autumn leaf. He said nothing, but smiled. And he walked on.
(To be continued…)