Growing Silence

For six years
From 92 to 98
My mother lived with us


I have paused now
After writing those words
Because to give true texture
To that simple declarative
I have to reveal
Our ragged raveled family
Cut to pieces too often
By jealousy and illness
Alcohol and abuse

You see?
Already to write just that
Grows a weed in me
That offers no shelter
Even before the worm destroys it
And I sit, burning and cursing
And feeling sorry for myself

That is why my words stood still
A minute ago
Because what grows in my now stillness
Is just simple stillness
Sweet sweet quiet

But to appreciate what it means to me
To snuggle with Woody 
Within this tightly woven
Wide warm quiet quilt
For you to appreciate that
I would have to show you my family’s rags
And I would rather not

Or maybe, all I need tell you is this:
My mother
When she lived with us
Got up early, went to bed late
And kept CNN on her TV, loud, louder, loudest
Despite hearing aids and surround sound
So that even in my bedroom
A floor and a more away
I could hear the words of the talking heads
Louder than my own thoughts

Maybe I don’t need to tell you
More than that
For you to glimpse
The gorgeous flowering
Of silence in my home
And what it means to me

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