He who does not know how to be silent will not know how to speak.
-Ausonius (c. 310-395 AD)
I like to watch people’s responses to a lull in noise. What do they say when there is no sound? What do they turn on when the world around them drops to stillness? Music? A television?
For me, the answer is- nothing.
Silence is underrated.
I very rarely get it; my workday is spent in close proximity to 3 other women, and there’s an enormous crane right outside my window, and, and, and… fill in the blanks. Be sure to continue ad nauseum.
There is the cessation of noise, and then there is silence- an utter hush that sings in your ears because it is so still that your own breathing produces a seashell whoosh.
I’m sitting in a calm almost like that at this moment- but of course there’s the clicking of the keys and the hum of the monitor and the high tone of the power cord to my computer…
But it’s close enough. Closer than I’ve been in a long time.
The embrace of silence is almost drugging. Almost- ecstatic. Elusive. Addictive. Seductive.
Soon it will be gone again, and I’ll crave it hopelessly for a long, long time, occasionally hearing a brief, teasing pulse of it amid the clamor of my days.
Elusiveness. Isn’t that supposed to be one of the most alluring qualities a person or object can have? It need not always be conscious or deliberate.
Silence is one of the things I desire most.
But moving toward it moves me away from- everything else.
12/17/2005 at 21:29
With Silence Favor Me -Horace (c. 65-8 BC)
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