Silence Speaks, by Nancy Schmalz

The silence of a held breath, its suspension and release,
the moment before a first note, the hush before applause,
the span of a leaf’s slow drift to the ground,
the gap between the careless word and the apology:
all these are measured by the hourglass of silence.

The nugget of wise counsel,
the kernel of a poem,
the cushion of balm after a loss.
These, too, are born of silence.

A frame for spoken thought,
a library of ancient texts,
silence is both a window and a mirror,
a bottomless pool.

Nancy Schmalz, Mineral Point