Mike Can Draw Beautiful Connections
By ice rivers
Mike not only continued to draw but he also continued to listen with purpose and intention. Mike observed not only with his eyes but also with his heart and mind. Mike's vocabulary began to grow as he listened and observed. Nouns first then verbs then adjectives.
Here's the story of the first adjective I can remember.
One day, I walked over to Mike's desk and noticed that he had been sketching a portrait of himself.
On his portrait, I wrote a bunch of nouns with arrows like "mike" and "nose" and "eyes" and "ears"and "head" and "neck" and "body".
I pointed to each word and said it. Mike repeated the word with me.
Then I added the adjective.
I wrote "famous"; drew an arrow to the picture of Mike and said the word.
Mike hesitated a second and then aked "Mike famous?"
I said "yes, Mike is famous"
Mike startled me with his reply.
"no, Mike not famous. You, Mr. Rivers...you famous."
I realized that Mike's language skills were blossoming with as much beauty as his drawing skills.
From that day on, every time I saw Mike I would always say.
"Here's the famous Mike."
And Mike would always say, "Mike not famous. Mr. Rivers famous."
We would laugh.
We were connected.
Sure enough, Mike WAS becoming famous, at least in my class. I was running the school newspaper at the time. I asked Mike, still using arrows, objects and printed words if he would draw a comic strip for the paper. He drew the strip. The school read Mike's comic. His character was a lion, The school loved it. Mike's fame grew. His audience expanded.
By this time, everybody in my class knew something rare was happening with Mike and his art, kids were always crowding around his desk to see what new drawings were coming alive.
About this time, Mike develped a crush on Kathy.
I discovered this when Mike showed me a picture of Kathy that he had been drawing.
Mike was stylizing Kathy rather than photographing her with his rendering. I immediately recognized Kathy even with her stylized, over sized Disney girl eyes. I wrote "Kathy" on Mike's paper and drew an arrow. Mike blushed and smiled.
I could tell Mike wanted another word from me, an adjective perhaps so under Kathy, I wrote "beautiful" and drew another arrow.
Mike put the drawing away. His portrait of Kathy was not an image that he intended to show to the class. Not only were we conected; we had a secret.
A couple of weeks passed and Mike's language skills kept growing.
One day, he took out the picture of Kathy and showed me something new that he had added. He showed me that he knew how to change and adjective into a noun.
Under my printing of "beautiful", Mike had printed a word of his own.
This is the Mike had printed in painstaking calligraphy.