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  • Sitting in the morning quiet of my office, I realize what a rich word silence is. Silence isn’t the absence of sound. Silence creates a space for a symphony of sounds:
    The wind wiggling the large magnolia leaves, freeing the tree of last years leftovers.
    The tick of the clock.
    The whir of the ceiling fan.
    The creak of the window sill.
    Birds landing lightly in the leaves and skittering away with a giant whoosh.
    My dogs breathy sighs.
    Birdsong bringing the day to life.
    The faintest flicker of the candle’s flame.
    The train blowing a whistle full of blues into the dawn.
    It’s a wonder I can hear myself think in all this noise!
    That’s exactly it. Silence is wonder.

    Usually, the dictionary definitions disappoint. They glide across a word rather than sinking into it, like landing in layers of deep downy quilts. But in this case, Webster almost captures the essence of wonder: “rapt attention or astonishment at something awesomely mysterious or new to one's experience.” Silence opens up room to pay rapt attention. It invites our curiosity to step outside the chatter and the clatter of an idle mind into the awesomely mysterious womb of the universe just inside our imagination. Silence awakens my senses and I feel the breeze brushes past me like cool silk on clean skin moving over me like mist on water. Stories begin to stir. I can hear myself think.

    Image beach marches in Milford, CT by KAW
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