This I Believe

I believe in the forgotten art form of silence. Noise is becoming an epidemic that is turning life into a stereo system of blaring iPods, mumbles of chatter, and rampage of garbage trucks and police sirens. The world of distractions is thriving, so much so that it is now rare to find silence, a place where the only thing not on mute are the voices of your mind. To be alone, not physically but mentally, your rusty wheels of imagination begin to spin, which create thoughts with the power to expand horizons and release you from reality. Yet we are so accustomed to sound that solitude is awkward. When with another, we feel the constant duty to make conversation and be entertaining instead of just enjoying each other's presence. Words and sounds have replaced the essence of being.

But I have found the secret garden of silence: the subway. At 6:45 every weekday, I take my place in my underground family of commuters on the D-train to Riverside. There is a clandestine code of conduct that demands silence. In my seat I sit in the stillness of the budding morning, watching the sun appear as the subway chart emerges from the narcotic tunnel. The only sound is the creaking and knocking harmony of the subway along the tracks. In my peace, I am free. I can stare out the window and watch the scenery of my script flicker past me like a broken filmstrip. I have the power to give each stranger on the subway a character, an identity that unifies us all together. I can lay my memories out like an endless scrapbook and relive each one. The silence gives me freedom. And only here is it respected.

Silence is privacy. A dirty thought, cunning lies, atrocious comments, all locked in my safe, and only I have the key. Silence gives me peace. No distractions, no interaction, no reality, just me. Silence can be my enemy when it forces me to face the truth. Silence makes me'.





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