“have you ever heard the wonderful silence just before the dawn? or the quiet and calm just as a storm ends? or perhaps you know the silence when you haven’t the answer to a question you’ve been asked, or the hush of a country road at night, or the expectant pause of a room full of people when someone is just about to speak, or, most beautiful of all, the moment after the door closes and you’re alone in the whole house? each one is different, you know, and all very beautiful if you listen carefully.”
-norton juster, the phantom tollbooth
huron river, ann arbor, mi, usa – january 2022
not me, she has better nails, though we do have a similar look and stance when excitedly interrupting.
“i don’t mean to interrupt people but i just randomly remember things and get really excited.”
-author unknown, but exactly what i would say
does anyone else have this issue?
i promise not to interrupt your written answer.
i’m working on it.
image credit: google images
I signed his copy of ‘The Tale of Despereaux’ and he said, “My teacher said fifth grade is the year of asking questions.”
“Really?” I said.
“Yeah,” he said. He took out a notebook. “Every day we’re supposed to ask someone different a good question and listen really good and then write down the answer when they’re done talking.”
“Oh,” I said, “I get it. I’m someone different. Okay, what’s your question?”
“My question is how do you get all that hope into your stories?”
“That’s not a good question,” I said. “That’s a great question. Let me think. Um. I guess that writing the story is an act of hope, and so even when I don’t feel hopeful, writing the story can lead me to hope. Does that make sense?”
“Yeah,” he said. He looked me in the eye. “It’s kind of a long answer. But I can write it all out. Thanks.”
He picked up his copy of Despereaux, and walked away—writing in his notebook.
This was years ago.
Why did I wake up this morning and think of this child?
Maybe because this is a time to start asking good questions, a time to write down the answers, a time to listen to each other really well.
I’m going to get myself a little spiral bound notebook.
I’m going to listen and hope.
-Kate DiCamillo – American author
I have a strong feeling
that olive has a strong feeling
about me leaving for a few days.
I hear you.
“the most important thing in communication
is hearing what isn’t said.”
animal image credit: bbc news, cynthia bennett