A few weeks ago I attended a poetry workshop in a lovely old house owned by a friend. The weekend allowed me to spend a considerable amount of time in large silent rooms and uninterrupted; I managed to write 5 poems in 2 days. This poem came about as I sat in the drawing room and listened to the silence.
Sitting in silence is an interesting thing to do. If you try it you will quickly discover that we are very rarely able to sit in total silence. That day I could hear an orchestra playing in the old house.
The house is quiet, but not silent.
I can hear an orchestra.
The stray branch which scrapes the window
mimics the strings as they warm up.
As wind caresses the chimney pot
a flute plays in the fire place.
The ‘woods wind’ can be heard
through the old sash windows.
The rattle of a door as it sways against its latch
Then, as a spoon tinkles in a distant cup
and a pianist springs to life.
In the hall the grandfather clock conducts
beating out a steady rhythm.
Footsteps herald the arrival of coffee
and the moment passes.