This is what silence sounds like in my back yard…

Wind whooshing, woodpecker playing snare drum in the old maple, a yellow toy truck klunk-bashing tall cedar and jungle gym. Cordless drill making holes in someone’s garage. Shouts, knocks, squeals, sirens, a harmonica. Hemlocks whisper-whispering, "shh, shh, shh," the girl can hear us. Nuts cracking, water drip dripping. Leaf blowers, lawn mowers, an ice cream truck blaring electric-sick rendition of "You are My Sunshine." A plane roaring towards Chicago, or maybe Africa. An aluminum door banging, playing hard-to-get with the breeze ("you can have me, no you can’t"). The dog next door, first in a game of dog dominoes, "woof-woof-woof" down the street and back again and again and again.

I take what I can get.

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Blogger Marcus Goodyear said...

This reminds me of John Cage's song 4'33". I used to perform that (as adapted for the Trombone) for my students years ago.

Blogger L.L. Barkat said...


I particularly loved the flash to "Movement 2"... the blank page of expectancy.

Blogger Monica said...

Ah! So, next time I'm sitting at the drums for worship band, I'll imagine myself as a woodpecker. (Worshipping, of course.)
Can't wait to go listening in my own yard...

Blogger Jennifer said...

I love that aluminum door. And that other stuff, too, for sure.

But that aluminum door is persistently playing hard-to-get in my mind right now.

Blogger Joelle said...

Brilliant! You are so deft at visioning the common in extraordinary ways. Dog-dominoes, hemlocks cautious of being overheard, and yes, I'm with Jen, my favorite is the aluminum door. Ice-cream truck sound brought back such memories....

Blogger Claire said...

"I take what I can get"

It leaves me hanging in a good way.

Blogger SuzyQ said...

Wonderful descriptive imagery!
I actually feel like I stepped into your back yard for a couple of minutes.
The "I take what I can get line".... Yeah I get that too :)

Blogger elk said...

i am glad to be in your back yard...so many cannot "hear" the silence
the dominoes game happen on my street as well

Blogger RickNiekLikeBikes said...

My favorite College Course Assignment was in Radio Production Class. We had to sit for one hour outside and write down every sound we heard...the assignment was to help us realize how important sounds were to any production, but I found a much more deeper appreciate for complexity of God and the simple life of me...at least for an hour.


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