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If These Walls Could Talk

How do walls view the world?

“Who is that?”
“That’s not the girl…”
“What happened to the girl?”
“How long has it been?”

The man and woman stood in the doorway of the second bedroom. Its bare white walls and softly carpeted floor held so much promise. “This will be his room,” the soon-to-be-Mother told her husband, her hand lightly touching the roundness of her belly. “We’ll put the crib in the corner there. The changing table can go there …” and in her mind she continued decorating the space. The soon-to-be-Father put his arm around his wife, lovingly. “Once we sign the papers, it’s ours,” he mused.

“Where’s the boy?”
“What happened to the boy?”
“He’s just in school, he’ll be back…”
“But it’s been so long.”
“It’s only been the morning.”

The Mother stood in the doorway, looking at the mess the was the boy’s room. Toys scattered everywhere and his favorite trucks and Hot Wheels taking a prominent place in the middle of the room. Just in the right spot to be stepped on and cause a fall. The whispering wind outside made her imagine her inner thoughts were given voice. How can he be in kindergarten already? She wondered. What am I going to do with my day now? She stopped her idle gathering of vehicles and sat down on the edge of his bed, running her hand over its well-made blanket. He takes such pride in this bed, she thought. The Father had declared that since he was going to “big boy” school now, he needed a “big boy” bed. The three of them had spent the weekend putting it together. And with only three leftover unidentifiable parts, she worried only a little about him taking a tumble out of it. With a sigh, she stood up and moved on.

“Where’s the boy?”
“What happened to the boy?”
“How long has it been?”

The quiet susurration could almost be heard as she passed by the boy’s room with her basket of laundry. The boy, she mused to herself smiling at how she still considered him a child. He’s away at college now and ‘a grown man’ according to him. She paused briefly beside the door to his room, with its walls full of car posters and its ceiling full of stars she and the Father put up when he really was just a boy. She vowed to call him this afternoon and make him promise to come home some weekend soon for a visit. She moved on.

“Where’s the boy?
“What happened to the boy?”
“How long has it been?”
“It must be years now!”
“It’s only been days…”
“I don’t feel right without his posters.”
“I still feel the same.”
“That’s ‘cause you are the same.”
“Quiet, she’s waking up…”

The Mother stirred in her chair, her book having fallen into her lap. She looked around the boy’s room. A small smile on her face as she did so. The boy’s room. It hasn’t been his room in years; she chided herself. The three lilac walls with their paintings of cottages and Kinkaid-esque landscapes softened the feel of what is now her “sitting room” as the father describes it. The fourth wall, though… That wall she left the same. That was his wall. Something to show him that even though he was grown and long ago moved out, this was still his room. Her husband often gently teased her about it, telling her the lime green Lamborghini didn’t go well with the pastel foliage and warm cottage window glow of the paintings. She didn’t care. She wanted the reminder of him and wanted to feel as if he were here instead of a thousand miles away in Chicago. She picked up her book again and dozily continued reading, letting the flow of words and the whispering walls send her back to sleep.

“Where’s the boy?”
“What happened to the boy?”

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