memoirs, art and fragments by Thomas Milner

The Silent Ones

The time has come to consider the sometimes anonymous inmates of the Home.

The patients that we never see, because they are bed-ridden, isolated & never quit their rooms. They are the silent ones and little sound reaches them from the outside world.

I think that writing about these people is a positive thing, an acknowledgement that they exist, a doffing of the cap to their lives.

(After all, one would want nothing less for oneself).

Everything is for done for them (existence in the Passive Voice). They are washed and changed twice a day; they are spoon-fed little bowls of soup or pap four times a day; they are visited once or twice a week by their families but they are not edified nor are they stimulated.

They endure.

Oh, those lethargic and inert mountains or skeletal ghostly wraiths with their sunken collapsed faces, speechless in Gaza; now they’re on the last leg of the race, inching silently towards the finishing line. They have run of steam and interest.

Thoughtless, they are dying of old age.

We honour them.

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