The beginning of the story "Early Autumn" Hughes demonstrates that communication is very important, without it can forever change lives. How do two people in love, spend so much time together talking let something not very important forever stain their lives. Mary and Bill needed to "take time out" and communicate.
After several years in a chance meeting in the park, Mary recognized Bill first. Bill didn't recognize Mary at first, she looked very old. She lifted up her face expecting a kiss and Bill only offered a handshake. Even though they both had moved on with their lives, Mary obviously had not moved on so smoothly. Her journey seemed to have affected her physical appearance. Bill, still a little bitter only offered a handshake, when Mary apparently wanted a kiss from her lost love.
They exchanged little conversation over families, and how they should meet. Bill had moved on Mary was reaching back in time to recapture what was lost. Then the bus comes along, Bill said good bye and shook her hand. Mary couldn’t speak she wanted to say more but was afraid. Only after the bus door closed she could speak but it was too late, he didn’t hear her. Mary realized they didn’t exchange numbers or tell him her younger son’s name is Bill. Mary was still in love with Bill so much that after years of separation her youngest was named after him.
Langston Hughes really brought this point home, communication is key. If we don’t talk keeping the lines of communication open, lives and love can be destroyed and lost forever. Sometimes we can let pride get in our way and that could break down communication. Bill and Mary’s lives changed so drastically over something so simple. Some people do manage to move on and find love again while others are still lost thinking of what could have been.