The Silent Treatment


The Silent Treatment

silence and I

are no longer on speaking terms

not sure if was something I said

or something I held back

so as not mislead or hurt

not that I mind

not hearing from silence

but somedays the brooding is tiresome

not even as much as good morning

nice to see you   have a nice day


I have learned to live with silence

not having to have the right response

is a blessing    a relief

not having to pretend to be listening

with little smiles and nods

to let silence know it’s understood

because frankly I don’t get silence

it doesn’t give me a clue to go on

beyond the brooding

never recriminates for my lack of insight

into my world of endless noise where

without silence there is nothing

with silence there is nothing


it’s not that silence isn’t sweet   fulfilling

but it isn’t attractive to me

I’m addicted to joyful noise

the gentle pasture of rippling silence

doesn’t hold any appeal for me

I am comforted by chatter

when there is none  worry slips in

what’s going on

why is so damn quiet around here

why have the birds stopped

ah yes – that’s death about to pounce


silence and I

are no longer on speaking terms

it doesn’t care to break its vow

it makes no demands

doesn’t expect me to explain rationalize

merely waits placid tranquil

because it knows

I will eventually enter its whisper

I will shuffle off the coil

of my mortal ear buds

to be taken into its patient embrace

chair01 the quiet back chair

I remember learning about ‘personification’ in high-school English. But here I push it beyond that by giving it the physical form with a personal emotional resonance of a lover.

The first line came to me out of the blue – I like a good first line – it’s a bit clever and nearly humorous as the piece takes the premise through various permutations of what one can’t get from silence, and also the things that silence can intimate.

chair02 as quiet as a chair

There’s also a comment on how we as a culture suffer from sound pollution – there is no such thing as silence – like light pollution means it is never dark. Even in a sound proof room you hear your own breathing and heart-beat. But in the real world this is no true quiet.

In fact there is a resistance to silence with music piped in everywhere. In subways to control crowd moods & scare away the pigeons. One apartment  lobby I sometimes call for a friend at has the classical music so loud I can’t hear him when he answers to buzz me in.

chair03 as heard on (yo)utub(e)

Finally it’s also a bit of a nod to Paul Simon’s ‘The Sounds of Silence’ ‘Hello darkness, my old friend’ – which owes a lot to Dylan Thomas. Both of whom were early inspirations when I was a noisy young man.


November 1-30 – participating – NaNoWriMo 2014 – nanoWinner-2014

December 14 – special guest spot – Lizzie Violet’s Cabaret Noirnoirmas


Like my pictures? I post more on Tumblr –

follow me there 🙂

2 thoughts on “The Silent Treatment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.