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Oh, The Silence

Long day

End of a long week

Went for a drive

To bide me some time

And buy me some things.

Purchased the lot

And turned to go home

And right then I thought

Let's hit the bookstore.

So I passed thru the square

To get me to there

Perused thru a concert

A band playing country music,

There were children laughing,

Dancing with family,

That's cool, it was sweet.

Entered into Nobles,

First name is mine,

Looked for a book

To inspire the mind,

Went into the section

Called "self-help" and such,

I read a few pages

To improve the mood,

One bookcase over

A woman plopped down

In the section called "grieving and dying"

And how to get on.

I paused for some moments,

Pondering my approach,

Compelled to connect,

Then I cleared my throat to speak--

Have you lost somebody?

She said Yes, my husband.

Oh, that's horrible. How long ago?

She said just last week,

It happened suddenly at dinner

A heart attack, out of nowhere,

and that was that.

I gave her my condolences

Then I told her my bit

My Uncle just died

And short before that, my Aunt,

And my son Elliott

Going on 3 years now,

She said oh, that's horrible

Yes, isn't it all?

But at least you got out,

Picked yourself up

Got out the house,

It's been hard, she said,

especially for this one.

Her daughter came over

She said, Mom where are the comics?

I don't know honey, just look around.

She said, I'll be over there

when you're ready to go.

There's no script for this here

We all handle it differently,

She said it was nice to meet you

It's good just to chat.

I said if I have anything

meaningful to offer you

It's a poem I wrote

One I read at my Uncle's funeral.

I gave her my website

To look at my poem

It's there for you to read it,

Shameless self promotion, I know,

But I shared it

And she needed it.

Then I went on my way

And checked out the book I chose,

The Silence of the Lambs

It was the last thing

My Uncle and I spoke of--

Oh, The Silence.

61 views7 comments


Ray Mullineaux
Ray Mullineaux
Sep 21, 2022

Sheila remarked on your courage in opening such a conversation.

"Everybody sees you're blown apart; everybody sees the wind blow" (Paul Simon, Graceland)

but not everyone seeks "you" out to inquire in open invitation.

In ordinary moments of our lives unexpected epiphanies open to reality not in

our narratives. Keep in touch with those moments.

Michael Barnes
Michael Barnes
Sep 21, 2022
Replying to

Thanks Uncle Ray and thanks Aunt Sheila. I agree, it is important to find ways to keep loved ones we have lost in our mind and heart. It is uncomfortable at first to bring up such a sad subject, but it helps to cope and it helps to honor their life.


Clayton Lively
Clayton Lively
Sep 21, 2022

I don't know what to write. I hope you keep writing.

Michael Barnes
Michael Barnes
Sep 21, 2022
Replying to

Thanks Clay, I always appreciate your support.


My goodness this was heavy. Heavy, raw, and beautiful. You write so well, bro. As you always have. I appreciate these mindful moments I get to stop and read these glimpses into your days. Absolutely love this. Absolutely love YOU!

Replying to

Wow! Well, with all the support you have here on Earth and in spirit, ya done good bud (insert huge thumbs up)!!!

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