Archive for December 10th, 2022

On Silence

GC Myers- Silent Watch sm

Silent Watch–Now at West End Gallery

Under all speech that is good for anything there lies a silence that is better. Silence is deep as Eternity; speech is shallow as Time.

–Thomas Carlyle, Sir Walter Scott (1838)

Silence. Can we create it, or does it just exist and can we only stumble across it occasionally? Of course, when we do come across it, we inevitably spoil it with the sound of our minds racing to understand, our ears straining to hear and eyes darting to discover.

Once we happen upon it, silence immediately moves on to some new locale far removed from the noise that comes with being human.

Being creatures of speech and time, do we have the capacity for silence and eternity outside of that which comes with death?

I don’t have an answer, of course. I find the idea of silence attractive, something to crave deeply. Yet I doubt that I have the ability to find that stillness within that is necessary for silence to linger more than few seconds.

But maybe those few seconds is all the time silence offers us in this life. Maybe that is enough for us, such as we are. Maybe we only really have the silence that exists between the sound of words and notes of music. 

Hmm. That’s a fine rabbit hole to stumble down on a cold Saturday morning, isn’t it? I could go on but what’s the point of that? More sound and less silence. Just time spent while silence and eternity are kept waiting.

Move on, folks– nothing to see here. Well, maybe one more thing. Here’s a lovely video that aptly visualizes the quietude of one of y longtime favorite pieces, Gymnopedie No. 1 from Erik Satie.

It might not be silence but it feels like it brings one a bit closer.

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