The Struggle For Silence

photo by David L. Moser

photo by David L. Moser

Someone said silence is golden

But I find nothing

Of precious metal

In the absence of sound.


Be still.

Jet noise and barking dogs

Creaking floorboards

Intermittent reminders

Of the scarcity of silence.


Tune it out.

Be still.

Shackled to sound

Needing the noise

To drown out the voice

Of the vicious inner critic.


Gag the voice.

Be still.

The heart is willing

But silence outside

Leaves too much room

For chatter inside.


Allow it.

Then be still.

But what if I remember

Or worse, forget?

What if shadows appear

In the silence?


Release them.

Be still.

Environmental noise

Is easily dismissed.

But the noise within

Is a rebellious child.


Trust me.

Trust yourself.


Be still and know.


12 thoughts on “The Struggle For Silence

  1. I love, love, love this. I am a person who has music, tv, some kind of white noise on in the background all the time for this reason. And every once in a while I’ll turn it all off and really enjoy the newfound quiet. I’ll squirm a little, but I’ll ultimately enjoy it. This poem really spoke to me. It’s okay to just allow the voices in. Excellent.

    • I know! I have music on constantly! I did experiment today with painting in silence. That was so much easier for me than writing in silence. Thank you for your comment. I’m glad you related to my words.

  2. Amy, the dialog of comforting self-talk and the doubtful thoughts going on in this poem is terrific. A few favorite lines:
    “The heart is willing
    But silence outside
    Leaves too much room
    For chatter inside.”

    Thank you. xoA

      • Its like when someone says…don’t think of yellow elephants…of course you won’t be able not to think of yellow elephants. I just watch them come and fly like leaves on a windy day…a very old trick…I don’t erase them, just observe them without participating.

  3. Pingback: Tanka: leaves in the Wind | Bastet and Sekhmet's Library

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