Voila! Finally, the The Miracle Worker
script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the Anne Bancroft and
Patty Duke movie. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly
transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of The Miracle Worker. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally
tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to
drop me a line. You won't
hurt my feelings. Honest.
I can tell you now, I thought she wouldn't.
I've brought up two of them.
This is my wife's first.
She isn't battle-scarred yet.
Will my girl be all right?
By morning she'll be knockin' down
Captain Keller's fences again.
Is there nothing we should do?
Put up stronger fencin'. Hm?
Just let her get well.
She knows how better than we do.
These things come and go in infants.
Never know why.
Call it acute congestion
of the stomach and brain.
I'll see you to your buggy, Doctor.
Main thing is the fever's gone.
I never saw a baby with more vitality.
That's the truth.
Don't you cry now.
You've been trouble enough.
"Call it acute congestion" indeed!
I don't see what's so cute about
a congestion just cos it's yours.
We'll have your father
run an editorial in his paper.
"The wonders of modern medicine."
They don't know what they're curing
even when they cure it.
Men! Men and their battle scars.
We women have...
Cap'n! Will you come?
- Katie! What is it? What's happened?
- Katie! What is it? What's wrong?
- Look! She can't see.
Look at her eyes. She can't see.
When I screamed she didn't blink.
- Not an eyelash!
- She can't hear you!
I told you to let her be.
Arthur? Arthur, something
ought to be done for that child.
A refreshin' suggestion. What?
Why, this very famous
Perkins School in Boston.
They're just supposed to do wonders.
She's been to specialists. They couldn't
help her in Baltimore or Washington.
I think the Cap'n will write
to the Perkins School soon.
Katie, how many times
can you break your heart?
Any number of times, as long as there's
the least chance for her to see or hear.
- What, child?
- There isn't! I must finish here.
With your permission, Cap'n, I would
like to write to the Perkins School.
I said no, Kate.
Writing does no harm, Arthur.
- A little bitty letter to see if they can help.
- They can't.
(Kate) We won't know that to be a fact
till after you write.
- I might as well work in a hen yard.
- (baby cries)
- You really ought to put her away, Father.
- Some asylum. It's the kindest thing.
- She is your sister, James.
Half-sister and half... mentally defective.
She can't keep herself clean.
It's not pleasant to see her about.
Do you dare complain
of what you can see?
This discussion's at an end. The house
is at sixes and sevens over the child.
I want some peace here. I don't care how.
But we won't have it by rushin' about
the country to every new quack.
- I'm as sensible to this affliction as...
She wants the doll to have eyes.
My goodness me. I'm not decent.
She doesn't know better, Aunt Ev.
I'll sew 'em on again.
It's worth a couple of buttons, Kate. Look.
This child has more sense
than all these men Kellers,
if there's ever a way
to reach that mind of hers.
- (baby cries)
Helen! You're not to do such things.
How can I make you understand?
How can I get it
into your head, my darling?
Katie, she must be taught
Discipline an afflicted child?
Is it her fault?
I didn't say it was.
How can I teach her?
Beat her till she's black and blue?
It's not safe. There must be
some way of confinin' her.
In a cage? She's a growin' child.
She has to use her limbs.
Answer me one thing.
Is it fair to the baby?
Are you willing to put her away?
She wants to talk like...
be like you and me.
Every day she slips further away.
I don't know how to call her back.
I do have a mind
to write to Boston myself.
If that school can't help her,
maybe they'll send somebody who can.
I'll write to Perkins, Katie.
(makes guttural sound)
Train to New York!
It will no doubt be difficult for you there.
(conductor) All aboard!
This is my last time to counsel you, Annie.
You do lack some -
and by some I mean all - what?
Tact. All talent to bend to others.
What has saved you
more than once at Perkins
is that there was nowhere to expel you to.
- Your eyes hurt?
- My ears, Mr Anagnos.
Nowhere but to that dreadful place
where you grew up learning to be saucy!
Annie, I know how unhappy
it was for you there,
but that battle is dead and done with.
Why not let it stay buried?
- I think God must owe me a resurrection.
- He keeps digging up that battle.
- That is not a proper thing to say.
Be humble. You'll need their affection
working with this child.
A gift, with our affection.
Dear Mr Anagnos.
Well... What should I say?
I'm an ignorant, opinionated girl,
and everything I am I owe to you?
That is only half-true, Annie.
Goodbye, goodbye. Goodbye.
I won't give them any trouble. I'll be
so ladylike they won't notice I've come!
- (child) Where are we going, Annie?
- Where are we going?
- I said I'm taking care of you.
Where are we going?
(man) Annie Sullivan, aged nine,
James Sullivan, aged seven.
What's the matter with your leg, sonny?
(Annie) It's his hip, mister.
He was born that way.
(man) Can't he walk without a crutch? Girl
to the women's ward, boy to the men's.
Annie! Annie, don't let them take me!
- Miss Sullivan?
At last. I thought the trains must be
backing up every time I dozed off.
- I'm James Keller.
- James? I had a brother Jimmy.
- Are you Helen's?
- I'm only half her brother.
- You're to be her governess?
- Well, try.
You look like half a governess.
- You have a trunk, Miss Sullivan?
We've met every train for two days.
You didn't bring Helen.
I was hoping you would.
No, she's home.
- You live far from town, Mrs Keller?
- Only a mile.
Well, I suppose I could wait
one more mile.
But don't be surprised
if I get out and push the horse.
- Welcome to lvy Green, Miss Sullivan.
- My husband, Miss Annie. Cap'n Keller.
- Captain, how do you do?
- Pleasure to see you.
- I trust you had an agreeable journey.
- Oh, I had several.
- Where do you want the trunk?
- Where Miss Sullivan can get at it.
- Yes. Where's Helen?
- And the suitcase.
I'll take that. I've got something
for Helen. When do I see her?
(Kate) There. There's Helen.
- (Captain) Katie...
- She's very rough, Katie.
- I like her, Cap'n.
How old is she?
Well, she's not in her teens, you know.
Why does she wear those glasses? I like
to see a person's eyes when I talk to 'em.
- For the sun. She was blind.
She had nine operations on her eyes.
One just before she left.
Blind? Good heavens! They expect
one blind child to teach another?
How long did she teach there?
She was a pupil.
This is her first position?
She was valedictorian.
A houseful of grown-ups
can't cope with Helen.
How can a half-blind Yankee
Now we have two of them.
- You be quiet.
- I was agreeing with you.
You talk too much.
- Nothing I say is right.
- Why say anything?
All the trouble I went to
and that's how I look?
Oh, no, not the drawers.
(doll makes sound)
All right, Miss O'Sullivan, let's begin.
You spell pretty well.
Finding out if she's ticklish? She is.
- What is it, a game?
- An alphabet.
For the deaf.
- How bright she is.
- You think she knows what she's doing?
She's a monkey. She imitates everything.
Yes, she's a bright little monkey, all right.
She wants her doll back.
- When she spells it.
- She doesn't know the thing has a name.
Of course not. Who expects her to now?
All I want is her fingers to learn the letters.
Won't mean anything to her.
She doesn't like that alphabet.
You invent it yourself?
Spanish monks under a vow of silence -
which I wish you'd take.
You do as my fingers do.
Never mind what it means.
Think it over.
Imitate now. Understand later.
End of the first lesson.
Oh, you little wretch.
Nobody's taught you any manners.
Helen! Helen, let me out...
Don't worry, they'll find you.
You're not lost.
Only out of place.
- Where's Miss Sullivan?
- Locked in her room.
Locked in her...?
- Helen locked her in and took the key.
- And you sit here and say nothing?
Everyone's been telling me
not to say anything.
- Viney, look out front for Helen.
- She's out by the pump!
- Miss Sullivan.
- Yes, Captain Keller.
Is there no key on your side?
If there were a key, I wouldn't be in here.
Helen took it.
The only thing on my side is me.
Not in the house ten minutes.
I don't see how you managed it.
And even I'm not on my side.
- Yes, sir, Captain Keller?
Put that meat back in the oven!
- She has no key.
- Nonsense. You searched in her pockets?
- Yes. She doesn't have it.
- Katie, she must have the key.
- Take that ladder back!
- She could have hidden it.
Anywhere. Under a stone...
I can't plough up the entire grounds
to find a missin' key.
Jimmy! Bring me a ladder!
- (baby crying)
- What's the baby doing up?
Captain woke her, Miss Kate.
All that hollerin'.
Get back to your work!
- Miss Sullivan!
- Yes, Captain Keller?
- Come onto the roof.
- You have a ladder. How thoughtful.
Come down, Miss Sullivan.
- I don't see how I can.
- I'll carry you.
- It's very chivalrous, but...
- Miss Sullivan, follow instructions.
I will not have you also
tumblin' out of our windows.
I hope this is not what we may expect in
simplifyin' the work of looking after Helen.
Captain Keller, I'm able to go down
a ladder under my own steam.
Miss Sullivan, I doubt it.
Simply hold onto my neck.
My neck, Miss Sullivan!
- I'm sorry to inconvenience you.
- No inconvenience.
Other than taking that door down and
replacing the lock, if we can't find the key.
- I'll look everywhere.
- Thank you.
Do not look in any rooms
that can be locked.
Go, go! What are you looking at?
Nothing for you to look at.
- (baby cries)
Would it be possible for us
to have dinner like other people?
- Miss Sullivan!
- Viney, I'll put the baby to sleep.
Oh... Might as well leave the l-a-d-d-e-r.
Oh, you think I'm so easily gotten rid of?
You've got a thing or two to learn first.
I've got nothing else to do,
- and nowhere to go.
- (Captain) Miss Sullivan!
It has a name.
Down, under, up.
And be careful of the needle.
Right. You keep out of the ink and
perhaps I can keep out of the soup.
All right, all right. Let's try temperance.
Very good girl.
- (Kate) What are you saying to her?
- I was just making conversation.
Saying it was a sewing card.
Does that mean that to her?
Oh, no. She won't know what spelling is
till she knows what a word is.
The Cap'n says it's like
spellin' to a fence post.
Does he, now?
- Is it?
It's how I watch you talk to the baby.
- The baby?
- Any baby.
It's gibberish. Grown-up gibberish.
Do they understand
one word of it to start?
Somehow they begin to if they hear it.
I'm letting Helen hear it.
Other children are not... impaired.
Oh, there's nothing impaired in that head.
It works like a mousetrap.
And... when will she learn?
Maybe after a million words.
Perhaps you'd like to read Dr Howe
on the question of words.
I should like also
to learn those... letters, Miss Annie.
I'll teach them to you tomorrow morning.
That makes only half a million each.
- It's her bedtime.
(makes guttural sounds)
Why does she get a reward
for stabbing me?
There are so many times
she simply cannot be compelled.
I'm the same way myself.
(James) Shouldn't we give
the devil his due, Father?
We lost the South two years earlier
when he outthought us behind Vicksburg.
Outthought is a peculiar word
for a butcher.
- Harness-maker, wasn't he?
- I said butcher.
His strength as a soldier was numbers.
He led them to slaughter like sheep.
- But even if he was a butcher...
- And a drunk, half the war.
If his own people said he was...
What is it you find to admire
in such a man, Jimmy?
- The drunkenness or the butchery?
- Neither, Father. Only that he beat us.
- He didn't.
- Are you saying we won the war, sir?
He didn't beat us at Vicksburg.
We lost it by stupidity vergin' on treason.
(James) We lost it because Grant was
one thing no Yankee general was before...
Drunk? I doubt it.
None of 'em compare with old Stonewall.
If he was there we'd still have Vicksburg.
(James) The butcher wouldn't give up.
He tried four ways...
(Captain) If we'd had
a Southerner in command
instead of a half-breed Yankee traitor
like Pemberton... What's the matter?
Miss Annie, she's accustomed
to helping herself from our plates.
- I'm not accustomed to it.
- Of course not. Viney!
- Jimmy, give her something.
- Her table manners are her best.
Let her this time. It's the only way
we get any adult conversation.
- I'll get another plate.
- I have one, thank you.
Viney! What Cap'n Keller says is only
too true. She'll persist in this till...
- I have a plate. I intend to keep it.
- You see why they took Vicksburg?
A plate is no matter
to struggle with a deprived child about.
- I'd sooner have a more heroic issue.
- I really must insist...
- She's hurt herself.
- She hasn't.
- Will you please let her hands go?
- You don't know her well enough...
I know a tantrum when I see one
and a badly spoiled child.
You'd have more understanding
if you had some pity.
Pity? For this tyrant?
The whole house turns on her whims.
Is there anything she doesn't get?
What I pity is that the sun won't rise and
set for her, and you're telling her it will.
What good will your pity do
when you're gone?
- Kate, for the love of heaven...
- I don't think it serves...
Serves you good. It's less trouble
to feel sorry than to teach her anything...
You haven't taught her anything yet.
- I'll begin now if you leave the room.
- Everyone, please!
- You are a paid teacher, nothing more.
I can't unteach her six years of pity
if you can't stand up to one tantrum.
Old Stonewall indeed!
Mrs Keller, you promised me help.
Leave me alone with her now.
Katie, come outside with me at once!
- Heaven's sakes!
- Out, please.
If it takes all summer, General!
I've a mind to ship her back to Boston,
and you can inform her so for me.
- I, Cap'n?
- She's a hireling.
Unless there's a complete
change of manner,
she goes back on the next train.
Will you make that clear?
Where will you be, Cap'n,
while I am making it clear?
At the office.
Will you? I thought what she said
was exceptionally intelligent.
- I've been sayin' it for years.
- To his face?
Or will you take it, Jimmy, as a flag?
(makes guttural sounds)
Good girl, Helen.
I don't see how you can wait here
a minute longer, Kate.
This could go on all afternoon too.
I'll tell the Cap'n you called.
Give me her, Miss Kate.
I'll sneak her in back to her crib.
- She never gives me a minute's worry.
- Oh, yes.
This one's the angel of the family.
No question about that.
- What happened?
- She ate from her own plate.
She ate with a spoon... herself.
And she folded her napkin.
Folded her napkin?
The room's a wreck,
but her napkin is folded.
I'll be in my room, Mrs Keller.
Don't be long, Miss Annie.
Dinner'll be ready right away.
Folded her napkin...
My Helen folded her napkin?
(woman) There's school.
- There is school.
- (woman # ) There is not.
What lies are you telling
the ignorant girl, you old loon?
They teach blind ones worse than her.
- To do what? See with their nose?
- To read and write.
How can they read and write
if they can't see?
- You crazy old Mick.
(Jimmy) You ain't going to school, Annie?
When I grow up.
You ain't either, Annie. You're going
to stay here, take care of me.
I'm going to school when I grow up.
You said we'd be together
for ever and ever and ever.
I'm going to school when I grow up!
Now leave me be.
"Can nothing be done
to disinter this human soul?"
"The whole neighbourhood
would rush to save this woman
if she were buried alive
by the caving in of a pit,
and labour with zeal
until she were dug out."
"Now, if there were one
who had as much patience as zeal,
he might awaken her..."
- (woman) They're all here.
- (woman # ) Talk to them.
- (woman # ) You can get out.
- Talk to them.
(woman) All the investigators is here.
- That's Mr Sanborn.
- He's the commissioner. Talk to him.
You might get out.
Mr Sanborn, I want to go to school.
"...might awaken her to a consciousness
of her immortal nature."
"The chance is small indeed,
but with a smaller chance they would
have dug desperately for her in the pit."
"And is the life of the soul
of less import than that of the body?"
Let alone the question of
who's to pay for the broken dishware.
From the moment she came,
she's been nothing but a burden.
ineffectual, immodest and...
She folded her napkin, Cap'n.
- She what?
- Not ineffectual.
Helen did fold her napkin.
What is so extraordinary
about foldin' a napkin?
Well, it's more than you did, Cap'n.
Today she scuttled any chance
of gettin' along with the child.
If you can see any point in her staying,
it's more than I can.
- What do you wish me to do?
- I want you to give her notice.
- I can't.
- Then if you won't, I must.
(Captain Keller shouting)
(Captain Keller shouting)
I thought we should have a talk.
Yes, I... Well, come in.
Miss Sullivan, I have decided...
I have decided I'm not satisfied.
- In fact, I'm deeply dissatisfied.
- Excuse me.
- Is that little house near the bridge used?
- In the huntin' season.
- Mrs Keller...
- If you'll give me your attention.
I've made allowances because you come
from a part of the country where people...
...women, I should say, come from,
for whom allowances must be made.
I have decided nevertheless
Miss Sullivan, I find it difficult
to talk through those glasses.
Why do you wear them?
The sun's been down for an hour.
Any kind of light hurts my eyes.
Put them on, Miss Sullivan.
to give you another chance.
- To do what?
- To remain in our employ.
But on two conditions.
I'm not used to rudeness.
There must be a radical
change of manner.
- Yours, young lady! Isn't it obvious?
And persuade me there's
a hope of your teaching a child
who flees from you like the plague
to anyone in this house.
- There isn't.
- What, Miss Annie?
It's hopeless here.
- Do I understand...
- If we agree it's hopeless...
Miss Annie, I'm not agreed.
She did fold her napkin.
Do you know she began talking
when she was six months old?
She could say water.
Well, not really.
But she meant water. She knew
what it meant, and only six months old.
I never saw a child so bright or outgoing.
It's still in there somewhere, isn't it?
Miss Annie, put up with her and with us.
Like the lost lamb in the parable,
I love her all the more.
Mrs Keller, I don't think Helen's
worst handicap is deafness or blindness.
I think it's your love... and pity.
All of you are so sorry for her,
you've kept her like a pet.
Why, even a dog you housebreak.
It's useless for me to try to teach her
language or anything else here.
Miss Annie, before you came
we spoke of putting her in an asylum.
What kind of asylum?
For mental defectives.
I visited there. I can't tell you what I saw.
People like animals,
with rats in the halls and...
What else are we to do if you give up?
- You said it was hopeless.
Give up? Why, I only today saw
what has to be done to begin.
- I want complete charge of her.
- You have that.
No. I mean day and night.
She has to be dependent on me.
- (Kate) For what?
The food she eats,
the clothes she wears, fresh... air.
Yes, the air she breathes.
Whatever her body needs
is a primer to teach her out of.
The one who lets her have it should be
her teacher, not anyone who loves her.
- But if she runs from you to us...
- Yes. That's the point.
I'll have to live with her somewhere else.
For how long?
Until she learns to listen to
and depend on me.
- I've packed half my things.
- Miss Sullivan...
It meets your conditions. It's the one way
I can get back in touch with Helen.
And I can't be rude to you
if you're not around.
What is your intention if I say no?
Pack the other half for home
and abandon your charge to... to...
The asylum? I grew up in such an asylum.
The state almshouse.
My brother Jimmy and I used to play
with the rats because we didn't have toys.
Maybe you'd like to know what Helen
will find not on visiting days.
One ward was full of the old women -
most of them dying,
but there was nowhere to move them.
That's where they put us.
There were younger ones - prostitutes
mostly, with TB and epileptic fits,
and a couple of the kind who keep after
other girls, especially young ones.
And some insane. Some just had the DT's.
The youngest were in another ward
to have babies. They started at .
but we played with the babies,
though a lot had sores from diseases
you're not supposed to talk about.
But not many of them lived.
The first year we had . died.
Jimmy and I played in the dead-house
where they kept the bodies.
- Oh, my dear...
- No. It made me strong.
But I don't think you need send
Helen there. She's strong enough.
Where would you take Helen?
Can't have everything.
How would your little house do?
Bring Helen there after a long ride
so she won't recognise it.
You can see her every day
if she doesn't know.
- Is that all?
- That's all.
Why, Cap'n, with your permission...
Percy could sleep there, run errands.
We could let Percy sleep there, Cap'n.
- And move in some old furniture.
- Cap'n, that old bedstead...
I've not yet consented to Percy,
or the house,
or the proposal,
or to Miss Sullivan staying on.
Very well, I consent to everything.
For two weeks.
I'll give you two weeks. It'll be a miracle
if you can get that child to tolerate you.
Two weeks. Miss Annie, can you
accomplish anything in two weeks?
Anything or not, two weeks
and the child comes back to us.
Make up your mind, Miss Sullivan.
Yes or no?
I'll get her to tolerate me.
A. It's the first of many.
- Does she know where she is?
For all she knows
she could be in another town.
- That's her sign for me.
- Yes, I know. In two weeks.
Miss Annie, please be good to her.
These two weeks,
try to be very good to her.
(doll makes sound)
What did I get into now?
Oh... oh... oh...
Did you call me?
- What are you doing here?
- Taking a turn. Is everything all right?
Just a dream?
How old was he? The other Jimmy.
How did he die?
He had a tubercular hip.
Oh, we were a pair, all right.
Me blind and him on a crutch.
When did he die?
years ago, this May.
You've had no one to dream about since?
No, one's enough.
You don't let go of things easily, do you?
You'd be quite a handsome girl
if it weren't for your eyes.
- No one's told you?
You'd be quite a gentleman
if it wasn't for your manners.
You wouldn't say that to me
if you didn't have your glasses on.
How will you win her hand now,
in this place?
Do I know? I lost my temper
and here we are.
I'm counting on her.
That little head is dying to know.
- Know what?
Any and every crumb in God's creation.
I've got to use that appetite too.
- Maybe she'll teach you.
- Of course.
That she isn't.
That there's such a thing as dullness
of heart, acceptance, and letting go.
Sooner or later we all give up, don't we?
Maybe you all do.
It's my idea of the original sin.
- What is?
- Giving up.
You won't open her.
Why can't you let her be and have
some pity on her for bein' what she is?
If I'd ever once thought like that,
I'd be dead.
You will be. Why trouble?
Or will you teach me?
No pity. I won't have it.
On either of us.
I will touch you!
How do I?
Percy, get up. Get out of bed
and come in here. I need you.
Percy? You awake?
How would you like to play
a nice game with Helen?
Touch her hand.
(makes guttural sound)
Let me go! Let me go!
She try and talk. She gonna hit me.
She can talk, if she only knew.
I'll show you how. She makes letters.
This is C...
She's mad at me. She won't play.
But she knows lots of letters.
This is A.
She spells cake, she gets cake.
She doesn't know it means this.
Isn't that funny?
She knows how to spell it,
but doesn't know she knows.
All right. If she won't play it with me,
I'll play it with you.
- Would you like to learn a new word?
This is M...
I... That's an easy one.
Just the little finger.
Oh, why should I talk to you?
I'm teaching a new word to Percy.
So you're jealous, are you?
I'm finally back to where I can touch you.
Touch and go.
Well, no love lost, but here we go.
You can go to bed now.
You've earned your sleep.
Now all I have to teach you is...
(doll makes sound)
Hush, little baby, don't say a word.
Mama's gonna buy you a mockingbird.
If that mockingbird don't sing
Mama's gonna buy you a diamond ring
If that diamond ring turns brass
Mama's gonna buy you a looking glass
If that looking glass gets broke
Mama's gonna buy you a billy goat
If that billy goat...
On my way to the office.
Thought I'd look in.
Well, she's toleratin' me
and I'm toleratin' her.
Where is... What's wrong?
I think she should dress herself.
She thinks she shouldn't.
- This her breakfast?
- She wouldn't eat?
- She'd love to eat it.
Why haven't you given it to her?
I will, when she dresses herself.
She's thinking it over.
- You intend to starve her into obeyin'?
- She won't starve, she'll learn.
All's fair in love and war, Captain Keller.
- This is hardly a war.
- Well, it's not love. A siege is a siege.
Miss Sullivan, do you like the child?
I'm beginning to.
It has a name.
Tree. It has a name.
Bird. It has a name.
Where's discipline? What a dictionary.
You have to know how to spell it
before you can look up how to spell it.
You're not to overwork your eyes,
Whatever I spell to Helen,
I'd better spell right.
- You've taught her so much this week.
- Not enough. Obedience isn't enough.
Well... she learned two nouns
this morning. Key and water.
- But not...?
Not that they mean things. It's still
a finger game to her. No meaning.
But she will.
Might I... Might I take her
for one walk this evening?
Shall we play our finger game,
- Next week seems so...
- Spell it.
...so far off.
- Spell it.
If she ever learns, you'll have
a lot to tell each other. Start now.
In... under, under. Yes, crochet.
Oh, it has a name, and sewing isn't it.
It has a name.
The name stands for the thing.
Oh, it's so simple.
Simple as birth to explain.
Helen, the chick has to
come out of its shell sometime.
You come out too.
No, not key. Thimble.
"I feel every day
more and more inadequate."
"My letters must show that
I need a teacher as much as Helen."
I need help too.
In all the world there isn't a soul
who can tell me how to reach you.
How do I reach you?
Doesn't she need affection too?
She never shows me she needs it.
She won't have any caressing.
What would another week accomplish?
We are more than satisfied.
You taught her things to do, to behave.
- So manageable. Cleaner.
We say cleanliness is next to godliness.
Cleanliness is next to nothing.
- Give me more time alone with her.
What is she spellin'?
Teaching a dog to spell?
The dog doesn't know what she means
any more than she knows what you mean.
I think you ask too much of her,
God may not have meant Helen
to have the... eyes you speak of.
I mean her to.
What is it to you?
- Half a week.
- An agreement is an agreement.
I want her back.
I'll send Viney to help you pack.
Not until o'clock.
I have her until o'clock.
Yes, what is it to me? They're satisfied.
Give them back their child
and their dog, both housebroken.
Everyone's satisfied but me.
I wanted to teach you.
Everything the earth is full of, Helen.
Everything on it that's ours for a wink.
And what we are on it. The light
we bring to it and leave behind in words.
You can see years back
in the light of words.
Everything we feel, think,
know, and share in words.
So not a soul is in darkness,
or done with even in the grave.
But I know.
I know one word and
I can put the world in your hand.
And whatever it is to me, I won't take less.
How do I tell you that...
this... means a word?
And the word means this thing, wool.
S-t-o-o-I means this thing.
Let her come!
Miss Annie, your first month's salary.
With many more to come, I trust.
It doesn't pay our debt
for what you've done.
I've taught her one thing: No.
Don't do this, don't do that.
- It's more than we could do...
- I wanted to teach her what language is.
I know without it
to do nothing but obey is no gift.
Obedience without understanding is
a blindness. Is that all I've wished on her?
I don't know what else to do.
I simply go on and keep doing what I've
done and have faith that inside she's...
that inside is waiting,
like water underground.
- You can help, Captain Keller.
The world is not an easy place
I don't want her just to obey.
But to let her have her way
in everything is a lie.
And I don't even love her.
She's not my child.
You've got to stand between
that lie and her.
Won't you come now to supper?
I used to wonder
how I could earn a living.
Oh, you do.
I really do. Now the question is,
can I survive it?
Oh, the keys!
Yes, I'll keep the keys.
I think we've had enough
of locked doors too.
Will you say the grace, Jimmy?
"And Jacob was left alone and wrestled
with an angel till the breaking of the day."
"And the hollow of Jacob's thigh was
out of joint as he wrestled with him."
"And the angel said
'Let me go, for the day breaketh."'
"And Jacob said 'I will not let thee go,
except thou bless me."'
Oh, you angel.
- That's a very strange grace, James.
- It's from the Good Book, isn't it?
Of course it is. Didn't you know?
- Yes, I knew.
- Well, why ask?
It is from the Good Book
and therefore a fitting grace.
Well, I don't know about that.
There's a lot of things in the Good Book
that I don't care to hear just before eating.
Well, fitting in the sense that Jacob's thigh
was out of joint, and so is this piggy's.
- James, I declare!
- Pickles, Aunt Ev?
I should say so.
You know my opinion of your pickles.
This is the end of them, I'm afraid.
I didn't put up nearly enough last summer.
Reverend looked in today
to complain his hens had stopped layin'.
Poor fella, he was out of joint. All that...
- I've always suspected those hens.
- Of what?
I think they're papists. Has he tried...
Now you're pulling my lower extremity.
The first thing you know
we'll be having another... one of our...
- Miss Annie, it's a very special day.
- It will be, when I give in to that.
Please. I've hardly welcomed her home.
- Captain Keller.
- Katie, we had a little talk.
- Miss Annie feels if we indulge Helen...
- It's a napkin. It's not breakable.
And everything she's learned is.
Mrs Keller, we shouldn't
play tug of war for her.
Either give her to me
or you keep her from kicking.
- What do you wish to do?
- Let me take her from the table.
Let her stay. She's only a child...
- And ask outsiders not to interfere.
- Outsider? Why, I'm the child's aunt.
Will this once hurt so much, Miss Annie?
I've made all of Helen's favourite foods.
It's her homecomin' party, Miss Annie.
- She's testing you.
- She's testing you.
Jimmy, be quiet.
Now that she's home, naturally...
She wants to see what'll happen at
your hands. I said it was my main worry.
- But she's not kickin' now.
- And not learning not to.
She'll live up to what you demand
and no more.
- She's testing you.
- I have an opinion.
- No one's interested in it.
Of course she's testing me.
Let me keep her to what she's learned
and she'll go on learning.
Take her out of my hands
and it all comes apart.
Be bountiful. It's at her expense.
Please pass me more
of her favourite food.
- Take her, Miss Annie.
- Thank you.
I'm afraid you're the difficulty, Miss Annie.
I'll keep her to what she's learned.
You're quite right.
But I don't see we need send her
from the table. She's the guest of honour.
Bring her plate back.
If she were a seeing child, you wouldn't...
She's not! I think
some compromise is called for.
Bring her plate.
Occasionally another hand
can smooth things out.
There. Now, shall we start all over?
(James) I think we've started all over.
Don't get up.
Don't smooth anything else out for me.
Don't interfere in any way. I treat her like
a seeing child because I ask her to see.
I expect her to see! Don't undo what I do!
- Where are you going?
- To fill this pitcher.
You let her speak to you like that?
A creature who works for you?
No, I don't.
- Let her go.
I said let her go! She's right.
Kate's right, I'm right, and you're wrong.
Has it never occurred to you
that on one occasion
you might be consummately wrong?
All right. Pump.
No, she's not here. Pump.
It has a name. W-a-t...
Oh, my dear.
Mrs Keller. Mrs Keller!
Mrs Keller... Mrs Keller.