Posts in Questions
From Silence to Speaking

I discovered silence for the first time on our frozen pond in Upstate New York in the winter, when my breath turned into clouds. Twigs snapped in the woods, but under that was a quiet that laced through the spaces between trees. It was a gentle quiet that held everything. I didn’t fully register it then, so focused on the scritch-scritch of my skates as I ankle-skated across the ice. 

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Will You Buy Me Flowers? A Moment of Shared Humanity

Connection has the remarkable capacity to transform our perception of ourselves, of others, and of the greater web of humanity in which we all share a part. In the truest sense of the word, connection shows up in many different shapes, sizes, and forms. Yet when we conceive of connection in our culture, we tend to focus the discourse around deeply woven, long-term relationships grounded in history and loyalty. In my experience, however, it is often the many moments of connection that have been just that—moments, fleeting in nature—that truly illuminate and, therefore, hold the capacity to transform our perception. 

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The Dining Room

It is quiet in the dining room of the nursing home at 5:15. No one speaks. The residents eat carefully and intentionally. This is the dining room for those who are able to feed themselves, and that is what they do. Each one looks straight-ahead, lifting fork, spoon, and cup from the table to their mouth. They are focused on eating, chewing and swallowing. They are focused on drinking, sipping and swallowing. There is no chatter, no conversation, no dawdling. Time is limited and nourishment is necessary. They eat with purpose, not with joy or pleasure, not with humor or social engagement. There is no mistaking this for a middle school cafeteria. There will not be a food fight. 

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Into the Shadow

Jim sweeps off his hat scattering snow to the ground and uses it to fan the embers. This time flames rise up to consume the softwood kindling which flares enough to catch. Jim stands, and we hold the silence. Snow again accumulates on his hat and our eyes are captivated by the fire. All of us are men. 

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