silence is golden

Before I left for three weeks in Idaho, one of my teachers offered up a bit of wisdom.  "With family," she said, "never miss an opportunity to say nothing." Attempting, or at least thinking about attempting, to keep my mouth shut is a good way to practice listening.  I'm trying to use my ears as much as my mouth and my eyes while up in the mountains.  There's a frog living out back, I'm surprised how alert he is mid-afternoon when I just want to nap in the shade.  The chime of the sailing mast lulls me to sleep at night.  Water lapping against the sand offers refreshment before my toes hit the waves.  The lack of hum from motor boats this morning tells me August is winding down.  Stories told over dinner invite glimpses into siblings lives.

Better still is when I quiet enough to listen to what's beyond words and familiar sounds...

Cloudy MoonHe stood there under a bright moon, with his finger to his lip.  "Shhhhh, listen," he said.  "If you listen, the silence has a lot to say."  (M Paterniti, NY Times).