There once was a boy who could not hear well. His parents were worried for him. “I hear everything mamma,” he used to reassure his worried mother. His father was a policeman. As a cop, he saw bad things happen to good people, everyday. He used to come home and yell. Not at his son, but for his boy “Be careful my lad, the world is a dangerous place.”
He son used to silently nod his head. He then used to run out to play.
One afternoon in the spring season, it was about to rain. The first few drops hit the ground. It released a beautiful scent. The boy knew now that it was about to rain. It made him very happy. Unlike other things, he did not need to hear rain. He could smell the rain before it hit the ground. He could taste the rain droplets. He could feel them on his body. Above all, he could see how rain changes everything around it.
He thought to himself “Rain is always new. Always brings something new. It holds my attention.”
Once it actually started raining, he went out. Danced in the rain like a peacock. Jumped in the puddles like a Kangaroo. Ran around like a rabbit. His joy knew no bounds. He was free from all the staring, all the judgement, all the pity. He just was and he loved every minute of it.
Soon, the pour reduced and the rain slowly started to fade. The sky began to clear. The sun began to shine. As he went in, the others came out. They began to enjoy the warmth of the sun. They began to go about their daily work.
The boy went into his room. He sat there on his bed. He began to think. Think about how wonderful it was, that rain comes to visit him every year, although he does not call it. He thanked rain in his mind.
He got up and went into the kitchen. His father was busy making tea for himself and the boy’s mother. He went behind his Dad and stood there silently. His dad was lost in thought about something else. He did not notice the boy. Then the boy said “Dad.” His dad got startled and looked at the stove. The tea was about to boil over. He switched off the heat and turned towards the boy. He threw his head into the air and made a gesture with his hands as if he was asking the boy “What’s up?”
Then the boy asked him “Do you remember how you keep saying that the world is a dangerous place?” The father mouthed the words “Yes,” or at least that is how the boy saw it. The boy then proceeded to say “Dad I know why you keep saying it.” The dad exclaimed loudly “Really? Do you now?”
“Yes,” the boy said. “It is a dangerous place because people do not hear each other. But I can.” The dad was now perplexed. He asked the boy loudly, “Why do you think so my lad? Why do you think so?”
“People speak with words and without words too. When they speak with words, they say things that they think someone wants to hear. But when they do not say words, they say things that they really mean. I hear those real things. Because, the others cannot hear them, like the gazelle that cannot hear a leopard that is stalking it, they often get betrayed. But, because I can hear them I will be safe in this dangerous world dad. Do not worry about me,” the boy said.
His father stood there silently. The boy heard his father’s silence and he left the room.
It rained again. He went out again. He smiled. He danced and he sang. His song was silent, like the morning dew that dropped from leaf to leaf. His father watched him from the window. He now saw. His boy was singing. “What a wonderful voice,” he thought.