"When dawn spreads its paintbrush on the plain, spilling purple... ," Sons of the Pioneers theme for TV show "Wagon Train." Dawn on the mythic Santa Fe Trail, New Mexico, looking toward Raton from Cimarron. -- Clarkphoto. A curmudgeon artist's musings melding metaphors and journalism, for readers in more than 150 countries.

Monday, December 20, 2021

Six Days 'til Christmas

"Season of Silence," 5 x 7 watercolor card

Can you hear the silence?

Not often in this hectic, noisy, busy "holiday" season, can you?

We live in a world of noise, bombarded almost 24/7 with blaring media and traffic; in fact, it seems most people are afraid of silence, avoiding it. 

What once was a season of hope for peace has ironically become anything but. One author termed our culture as the "attention economy."

And if there is no silence, can there be any peace? When do we have time to stop, think, meditate, dream, create if our senses  are constantly assaulted with noise--both visual and aural?

That's one of the reasons I enjoy driving the back roads, sparsely settled, where traffic is scarce. No music, no news, just alone with my thoughts. Or walking a trail in Hafer park where at least the noise of traffic is muted, and you the sounds of birds and leaves in the breeze are the only disruptions.

That's why memories of hunting pheasant in Iowa or deer in Oklahoma remain, or  driving remote roads in New Mexico remain so vivid. I remember the silence of of walking the empty corn fields or being in the woods, or traveling the wide open Great Plains. Having lived several years in rural areas, you learn to value silence when you move to a city.

It's certainly why I value falling snow. It muffles sound, and turns the world into a quiet wonderland, where you can cuddle up with a book, a cat, some coffee, and enjoy the silence inside and out.

Thus this watercolor card. Can you hear the silence, more important than ever. Pease.

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