Where Did It Go?

A musing about silence

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Photo by Mathieu Perrier on Unsplash

Jean, your poem led me to reflect on the subjects of silence and commotion in this very odd time.

The 2020 pandemic isolated us — keeping us from social situations, lessening the voices in our lives, but also adding noise to many homes as people worked from their bedrooms, living rooms, and kitchen tables while unschooled children played rambunctious games to ease loneliness as the household was subjected to teachers and lessons that once took place blocks or miles away.

Some complained of solitude, loneliness, and soundlessness while others bellyached about too much noise in too little space.

As we adjusted to an opening world, trying to find balance while venturing from our isolation, the planet became a hotbed of controversy, and the silence was replaced with shouts, screams, speeches, sirens, and shock.

Our TVs and computers are 24/7 megaphones. Our brains are on the brink of implosion from an overload of information, disinformation, and confusion.

Many went from a quiescent existence to one of bellowing bedlam.

Your poem prompted the first consideration I entertained about the quiet/noise imbalance in our upended world.

As the pandemic took hold in the USA, I longed for quiet downtime from a career that kept me working seven days a week for months. I didn’t get it. Maybe, the slightest slowdown, but even that tiny break lasted only two or maybe, three weeks, returning quickly to a rushing world of work, responsibilities, and clamor. And, all the while, blasted by a confused and confusing media world.

Where did the silence go?

It slipped past me like a ghost.

And, maybe, that’s what is needed now in this inchoate revolution — more noise.

But, I lament the silence I didn’t experience.

Written by

I was always a writer but lived in a bookkeeper’s body before I found Medium and broke free — well, almost. Working to work less and write more.

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