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Posts Tagged ‘silence’

 

 

Apparently no one told the tickle in my throat

that this was a silent retreat.

All it wanted to do was explore the sound

of throat clearing, the sound of cough.

 

All around me the sound of nothing

but breathing and sitting, but in me,

this tickle saying Notice me, Notice me.

Here I am and what will you do about it?

I told the tickle, If I were freeclimbing,

I would ignore you. My life would depend on it.

 

The tickle said, but you’re here,

here in a quiet room, and your life is at stake

in a much different way. What are you willing

to notice? What do you wish away?

Isn’t this just one more way you tell yourself

life would be better if it were different?

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Consider the generosity of silence,

how it holds the space between icicle drips,

how it meets squawk and howl

and laugh and sob with the same acceptance,

the same respect. How it asks nothing of the world

and yet is always there waiting

beneath the passing car, the passing thought.

 

I don’t want to live my life without knowing you,

silence, you the great loom on which all life is woven,

you the wisdom with nothing to say.

 

I want to invite you into all the rooms of my heart,

want to know the ways you permeate me,

how you inform every cell.

 

I want to find you inside every word, to know

in all my speech the silence that supports it.

 

I want to know you, silence, you who was here

before the big bang and you who continue to grow.

You who touch the seas and the barren rock,

the snow covered mountain, the meadow of mud,

who touched the first leaf and met the first cry,

who will touch the last leaf, who will meet

the last song. And go on.

 

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Nothing happened today

as I sat for five minutes in the dark,

but all day I could feel the everywhere of it,

 

even as the car was sliding sideways down the hill,

even as my daughter wept, even as my singing group

laughed until we cried, I could feel it still there,

 

the silence that holds up all sound, the stillness

that cradles all motion, the peace that supports

every disaster, the blue sky behind the clouds.

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surrounded by the most

lovely silence

the crow

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One Palette

 

 

shush of skis, sharp heave

of breath, wild red thump of heart—

silent trees, silent snow

 

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The All Of It

 

 

 

just sing, little darling, sing with me.

—Emmylou, First Aid Kit

 

 

The song does not understand

the word forsake. Though it

dances with silence, it always

returns, like petals, like morning,

like waves. The song will never

leave you. When you cannot

hear it—when the song

seems lost to your lips—

that is when it is ripening.

Let us add our voices

to the song, the song that

is singing us awake.

And let us add our silences

to it, too. How beautifully

it holds us, becomes stem,

becomes sun, becomes oar.

 

 

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If you watch the heron as it stalks

amongst the tall green reeds, then pauses,

and in its pausing disappears, then you understand

something of the power of stillness.

 

And if you, yourself, are still long enough

to see the head of the snapping turtle

rise between the lily pads,

then you glean something of the rewards

that come with sitting still.

 

But if you sit expecting such rewards,

then perhaps sit longer and watch the cattails

as they waver and still, sway and still and still,

and feel how the urge in you to say something rises

and softens and softens until there is nothing to say,

 

until that kind of stillness becomes

the greatest reward, until you feel

stillness hold you the way the lake

holds the lily pad, the way

the silence holds a song.

 

 

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            Based on an encaustic piece by the same name by Andrea Bird

 

 

 

She asks if I can hear the silence.

I try. I try too hard and all I hear is a low

green chant: lovable, loveless, loophole, loose. 

 

So she gives me petals, a handful of pink,

and I gather them in my hands. How lovely

they are as I listen to them fall.

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Anywhere at All

 

 

 

I find the silence

between your words

and set a cushion there

and close my eyes

and find stillness in that quiet

place in you

that speaks to that quiet

place in me.

Within a single conversation

we’ve shared communion

a thousand times—

is it any wonder we cry

when we say goodbye?

 

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The sound of your breath is the quietest of songs.

—Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening

 

 

Maybe on that day

when we think, I forgot

to sing, that’s when we

realize that all day long

we harmonized with the world

in the quietest of songs—

joined in without any effort,

no striving at all,

and maybe that is the day

when we stop trying

to be heard and start

to notice the song

inside every other song,

the song inside every other being,

how perfectly in tune we are,

how easily we join—no conductor,

no notes, no beat, just one perfect

air. Maybe that’s the day we hear

the metronome of our own

steady heart and say to it,

I will trust you, feel the truth

of the song as it slips

from our lips, then

rushes in to fill us again.

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