Deep Thoughts About Silence
By a student of Henri Nouwen*
Silence is night
and just as there are nights
with no moon and no stars
when you’re all alone
when you’re cursed
when you become a nothing
which no one needs
So there are silences which are threatening
because there is nothing except
Even if you open your ears and your eyes
it keeps going on without hope or relief.
Night with no light, no hope
I am alone in my guilt
without forgiveness, without love.
Then, desperately, I go looking for friends
then I walk the streets a body, a sign, a sound
But there are also night with stars
with a full moon
with the light from a house in the distance
and silences which are peaceful and reflective.
The noise of a sparrow in a large empty church
when my heart wants to sing out with joy
when I feel that I’m not alone
when I’m expecting friends
or remember a couple words
from a poem I read lately
when I lose myself in a Hail Mary
or the somber voice of a psalm
when I am me and you are you
when we aren’t afraid of each other
when we leave all talk to the angel
who brought us the silence and peace.
*From the book: With Open Hands by Henri Nouwen
This book is about the silence that most people today
do not experience and gives a Christian perspective
of being quiet and knowing God.