Kyle’s Column: Reflection


In the latest installment of Kyle’s Column, WSPN’s Opinions Editor Kyle Chen reflects upon the lessons that come with having a cold.

Kyle Chen

The boy sat in the corner of the library, his gaze fixed on the computer screen in front of him. Various books, binders and papers littered the table. From time to time he would pick one up, scan through its contents, then toss it back haphazardly onto the desk. The boy closed his computer, leaned back in the chair and let out an enormous yawn. He rubbed his eyes – two more weeks, he told himself, just two weeks to go.

The library was silent except for the sound of the librarian shuffling a stack of papers with a preoccupied air. Outside, the rain poured onto the roof of the school. The boy closed his eyes for a moment, listening to the steady drumming. How calming, he thought.

Two weeks is not a lot of time, the boy mused as he opened his chemistry notebook. The pages were thick with equations and definitions, all scrawled in the boy’s messy handwriting. He flipped to the end – nothing but notes. Crazy, he thought. Seems like just yesterday these pages were blank. Where has all the time gone?

The boy’s eyes settled on the green exit sign perched above the library doors. His gaze became unfocused. On the outside, he seemed to enter some kind of drowsy stupor, lulled to sleep by the rhythmic whisper of the rain. Images flashed beneath his eyelids; just glances, quick peeks, into the world he had seen but since forgotten.

He saw his teachers, his classmates, his friends. He watched a boy about his age walk through the doors on the first day of school. He watched as the boy began to carve his own niche and find his own place in the community. He saw the boy puzzle over chemistry problems, pore over primary documents, and contemplate half-finished essays. He relived the late nights, the stress of looming deadlines. He felt the wind rushing through his hair and heard the steady thud of his spikes against the dirt as he ran, and watched his fingers fly across the keys of a piano. He remembered the bitter taste of failure and reveled in the euphoria of success.

The whole experience lasted no more than a few seconds. Coming back to reality, the boy shook his head as if to clear it; his pupils regaining their focus, he glanced at the clock again. A buzzing sound, muffled by the boy’s papers, rose from the table. Tossing aside his binders, the boy fished his phone out of the mess. Without another glance, he dropped his phone in his pocket and began collecting his belongings. After stuffing his history binder into the reluctant mouth of his backpack, the boy got up, slinging the bag onto his shoulder as he walked out of the library.

Outside, the rain was still coming down. The boy stood at the entrance of the building, staring out into the dreary afternoon. He watched as a drenched young student dashed through the rain towards the building entrance, standing aside as she flung the door open and rushed past him. As the door swung shut, the boy turned his attention back to the rain, only to see a pair of round eyes gazing back at him in the glass door.

It’s the boy from the dream, he thought. It certainly seemed so; the boy had the same round face, the same thoughtful expression. But as he looked, he noticed the differences; the new gleam in the boy’s eyes, the firm line of his mouth. I’ve changed, he realized. I’m no longer the same person as the boy from the dream.

With this realization, the lips in the mirror curved upward in a slight smile. The twinkle was back in the boy’s eye; a small teasing gleam, the shine of possibility, of potential, of the future.

The smile had reached the boy’s ears. Tearing his eyes away from the reflection, he pushed open the door and walked out into the drizzling rain.

Opinion articles written by staff members represent their personal views. The opinions expressed do not necessarily represent WSPN as a publication.