Poem on Deafness

How Does It Feel to Be Deaf?

An anonymous poem on deafness

What is it like to be deaf? People have asked me.
How do I explain that? Simply, I can't hear?
Nooo, it is much more than that!!!!!
It is similar to a goldfish in a bowl.
Always observing things going on.
People talking all the time.
It is being on a desert island, or among foreigners.
Isolation, is not a stranger to me.
Relatives only say hi and bye, as I sit for hours with them.

Taking great pleasure at watching amusing babies, reading books, resting, or
helping out with food.
My natural curiosity perks up when I see laughter, tears or someone upset.
When I inquire "what's up", only to be meet with "Oh never mind" or "Oh,
it's not important"!
A short summarized statement of the story I'm supposed to smile and show
Little do they know how truly miserable I am.
Hearing people are in control of their language usage,
I am at a loss and very uncomfortable.
Always the feeling of being an outsider
Among the hearing people even if it was not their intention.
Always assuming that I am part of them because of my physical presence, not,
understanding the importance of communication.
When I am faced with a choice between a deaf camping weekend or a family
Forced to choice between family commitment or deaf friends
I must make the choice constantly!!
Any wonder why I choose deaf friends????

I get such great pleasure when I am at a deaf club.
Before I realize it, its 2:00 a.m.
But I anxiously look at the clock every few minutes at a family gathering.
With Deaf people, I am so NORMAL!!!
Our communication flows back and forth
Catching up with little trivial things-- about our daily lives --about our
frustration in the the bigger world.

Seeking the mutual understanding
Contented smiles, and laughter are like music
So MAGICAL to me
We're so attuned to each other's feelings
Truly this happiness so important!!!
I feel more at home with Deaf people
We don't see people as being short or tall, various colors, or religions.
As I do when I'm among my own hearing relatives
And I wonder why?
Our language is common.
We understand each other.
Then I realize, its being at loss, not in control of my environment.
That is a "Lack of COMMUNICATION"
People panic and retreat to avoid the deaf.
We feel like we have the plague
But Deaf people are still human beings, with dreams, desires and NEEDS
We want to BELONG just like everyone else


I certify that I am the author or sole owner of the material I am submitting to About.com. About.com and its licensees may reproduce, distribute, publish, display, edit, modify, create derivative works and otherwise use the material for any purpose in any form and on any media. I retain copyright ownership of materials I submit. I agree to indemnify About.com for all damages and expenses that may be incurred in connection with the material. For more information, please see our user agreement.

Continue Reading