Most people look at him and see a studious young man, dark glasses, diligent eyes; they see crisp uniforms and a practical haircut, shoes polished until they shine. They never see anything else.
They never see the sparkle in those eyes that grow when he speaks of seeing the world; they never understand when he points at a random spot on the map and says, "I want to go there." They never see. They don't want to.
It's not right, maybe, to them. He's a student with dreams that will remain dreams. Nothing more.
Most people look at her and see a small girl with straggly hair and crooked front teeth; they see squinted eyes and a freckled nose, body rail-thin. They never see anything else.
They never see her smile as she looks at a finished graffiti with the word peace scrawled across; they never hear the delight of her laugh when she sees flowers painted on grey streets devoid of plants.
It's not right, maybe, to them. She's a vandal that sprays color on concrete. Nothing more.
Most people look at him and see a kneeling man with grey hair and lined hands; they see ragged clothing and weary eyes, limbs shaking from the cold. They never see anything else.
They never see the amputated leg that he no longer has; they never see the way he painfully, doggedly crosses the street each morning, arms leaning on unstable crutches.
It's not right, maybe, to them. He's a homeless person, too lazy to work. Nothing more.
Most people look at her and see a thick-bodied woman with a broom in her hands; they see hips like barrels and rough fingers, legs too slow to let her sweep a street any quicker. They never see anything else.
They never see the way arthritis tightens her joints as she sweeps the streets on cold mornings; they never see the cleansing chemicals that dry her hands out until they feel like wood.
It's not right, maybe, to them. She's a slow street sweeper, standing in the way. Nothing more.