Sunday, October 28, 2012

On Silence

I have known silence since my early 20's which has been several decades now. Silence has been my friend. She is like Sophia--Lady Wisdom--to me and I love and long to spend time with her.

I had a profound experience of silence which happened last May in the midst of my father's final days here on earth. Only a few weeks before he passed away, I was showered with grace-filled moments of silence where the Divine Physician spoke from his heart and whispered secrets to mine. And the story goes like this...

He ambled feebly down the hallway,
I turned and to my surprise he was by my side.
I had come to be with Kathryn, my mother,
his beloved spouse of nearly 61 years.

Together we slowly walked down another hall toward her room--
He pushing his walker, me--slightly touching his shoulder.

She, Kathryn, lie waiting in her bed, unaware of the great communion about to happen.
He was now ambling over to her bedside,
Reaching out to take her hand.
I, standing on the other side of the bed, watching...
All done in silence.

He had no need to utter a word, yet
the words were written for me in invisible script.
In silence I strangely understood
This would be the last time I would witness their profound love--
Of the two being together on this earth.

Silently, I weep, as I thought of that reality which became true.
The beauty of what I was beholding between them
felt like more than I could bear.

For almost half an hour, he stood silently.
I asked him if he wanted a seat.
He wanted only--
only to be hovering over her was enough--
holding her hand without words, and yet,
a hundred "I love yous" he communicated.

When he was ready to go, I walked with him, quite silently,
back down the hallway to his room.
We had been lifted to a realm where language was transcended.
I knew the true love I had witnessed.
He knew too!
That was enough.

Only two and a half days later,
after falling and breaking his hip,
his final journey of passing into eternal silence began.

One week later,
yet another trauma--a major brain bleed,
He could never utter a word distinctly again.

And yet, that same hand held mine now--
Our hands--those of all my siblings--in that hospital room,
And it communicated a depth of words
No language could adequately do justice.

His eyes as they gazed deeply into ours,
Spoke every unspoken word to his children,
of the last sixty years that he and our mother's love
had generated.

In that silence we found grace, we found gift,
And we were able to love him
More than ever before.
Each stroke of his face, each touch of his body,
Reassured him and us of a love that will never die--
A love that will be forever!

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