quiet, a poem

the following is a little poem i wrote when thinking about quiet moments...


the kind of quiet

sometimes the world feels too loud

it feels like everyone is speaking and no one is listening

and all I want to do is bring my hands to my ears

close my eyes

wish myself into another existence

into another moment

into the quiet of the woods

into a time and place when I can hear my breath

and almost hear my heart

and i can hear the squirrel in the leaves

and the wind in the branches

and your feet on the path in front of me.

sometimes I can’t deal with the all caps

with the retorts

with the everyone trying to one up each other

trying to be the loudest

trying to be the smartest

trying not to give a shit the most

sometimes I want quiet care

I want a hand on top of mine

that look of understanding

that search for connection

sometimes the world is so loud

I wonder if we are trying to yell

to prove to ourselves that we are here

like how teenagers’ voices bounce off our ear drums

as they find the bounds between youth and adulthood

or like how we othered people, we who have been othered,

have had to yell to prove that we exist

have feelings and lives and blood and bone

we yell to show we are alive and cannot be ignored

we yell to show we are not to be inferior-ized, child-ized

and so what does it mean that I sometimes can’t handle the decibel

can’t handle the yelling


maybe it is that there is just too much yelling

and I can’t hear the ones that matter,

the ones that hit my soul,

the ones that I say

yes yes yes yes yes yes to

sometimes I worry that my yearning for quiet is just a form of escape

and is an attempt to ignore the work that my life requires

and sometimes I note that it is just that I am an introvert

and my soul prefers written words read with tea and a pen in hand

alone or nearly alone on a Saturday afternoon

I wonder how to balance the sound needed to thrive

and the sound that feels as though it beats me

down further into myself so that I don’t just yearn for quiet

but also for isolation


I want the kind of quiet you learn from

the kind of quiet that you listen to and in

the kind of quiet that prepares you for battle

the kind of quiet that is actually quite lou

in the quiet

it is late. not really late, but late for me now. and i am sitting in the dark in my living room. i can just make out the books in the bookcase due to the streetlights outside. and the dog just came in and sat near me. and i can hear my boyfriend shift in bed in the other room. and i sit in the dark in the living room with a headache and the sound of a bus pulling into the bus stop downstairs. and then there is the sound of my fingers typing away. and it is late and i am in the dark and i feel like i shouldn't have had a bite of a marshmallow an hour ago because now i feel a bit sick to my stomach. but the dark can help with that. it does. 

and i have too much i should be doing. too much that got lost today. and tomorrow there is another to do list and my head hurts and the dog makes little dog snores and i enjoy sitting in the dark in the living room with only the sounds of the world around me and my own voice in my own mind and not out in the world too.

i feel like i've been talking a lot lately. in general. to lots of people. and i want to be quiet. i know i partially want to be quiet because i am scared of what happens when i open my mouth. i am scared sometimes to encounter the person who comes out and the person who is left to deal with the one who comes out.

the dog growls as he hears a dog bark outside. he sits up and stares out the window.

sometimes i want to stay in this quiet moment, in this living room in the dark, with those i care for nearby and i don't want to have to say anything or be anyone but a person thinking to herself. i want to just worry and complain and fight and cry and laugh and feel numb all in this dark space, all in the quiet of the evening, all in my head. 

the boyfriend shifts in the other room and the dog has gotten upset by another sound and i am moments from gathering them up and exhaling because with them in the dark in this apartment i can just be quiet and be me--

and yet let me linger in this moment, let me linger with just me a bit longer, let me stay in this quiet in this darkness in this place for just a moment longer--

before i close my eyes and get ready for the light for the outside for a day of words again, let me breathe the words out here in the dark by myself

in the quiet.