Sunday, February 27, 2011

Things I love. (27)

I love silence.

Or, more specifically, human silence.

While in Val Marie, I could sit outside of my house and hear nothing for hours of human existence. I could see it - the town, the bright lights of distant farms. But I could hear nothing. There were no cars running the distance, no air-conditioner motors whirling in somebody's backyard. The mechanical world of never-ending noise did not exist. And it was beautiful.

Coyotes would howl. You would hear them. Slowly the reeds of grass would bend and crackle as their veins snapped under the pressure of an animal stalking its prey. Bugs, bugs, bugs - buzzing and screeching their melodies of life and death. A badger would be digging up a hole in the darkness, its eyesight so much better than ours in the dark, and you knew to avoid them rather than to investigate. The wind, calmed with the coolness of night, whispering through the night.

It wasn't completely silent, but it was beautiful.

Because there was no noise - just sound. No motors or sounds of gravel being crushed under the weight of man. Everything was absorbed into creation - and creation was absorbed into the noiselessness of nature. Nearly silent, but alive with energy.

It is a thing I have missed in the city - where there is always a human doing something and intruding on that instant of focus of thought, of reading, of nothing. And yet we mostly sleep through it, never realizing what silence is - never appreciating it and how it can cleanse our mind as water does our body.