They passed him by every day as if he didn’t exist, but that didn’t bother him. He just sat quietly in his corner watching them come and go, clutching a pillow to his chest as if it were a soft-toy. As the years dwindled, so did the people. Poor Teddy… He sat in his corner like a loyal dog diligently guarding his space, hoping yet that someone would pass by and notice him.
Defined by solitude, as if a curse hung over his head, he would never impose himself on anyone. The wrinkles stemming from the corners of his eyes must certainly be hiding a streak of cheekiness, I thought; or perhaps… a lifetime of worry.
Now, I am the only one who is left. He sits there and peers at me from afar and I return his gaze. As he looks at me with an air of innocence, I notice that the pillow, which for a lifetime he had held to his chest , had slipped and is now lying helplessly in his lap. He doesn’t bother to pick it up.
I lift my eyes and look at him once again. His little round eyes meet mine with a spatter of hopefulness mixed in with chestnut brown. They are questioning me, keenly awaiting a response; and I don’t know what to say. As we stare into each other’s eyes he speaks words unspoken, unknown. I couldn’t tell you what he said, but I felt his pain as if I was falling into a mirror. The words are lonely, they are sad. Life has worn him out and he no longer knows what to do with himself.
Poor Teddy! All he wants is to reach out and touch me. But he can’t.