Moment of Silence [old poem]

Submitted by Madeline on Sat, 12/30/2017 - 17:36

PLEASE READ NOTE before reading
There was a moment of silence
After the movie ended
Where nobody spoke.
And I sat there, for a minute
but then it drove me away.
And I stood in the kitchen
Listening to "What a Wonderful World" play
Flighty strumming.
A man sung about how
everything was good.
And I longed to be in there.
Among the mute bodies.
Sharing in that moment.
But I couldn't.
Do it, that was.
Walk in there.
In the face of emotion.
And be the thing they watched
So I waited
Until the appropriate time.
Slipped back in--so awkward--and
sat. In a moment he moved.
The music still played.
Everything broke and fell away.
Like pieces of...something.
Something that evaded me.
and still does.
To this day.
And sometimes I look back.
And I wish I was brave.

Author's age when written

I was looking through old writing as I write my major declaration essay, and I stumbled across this poem. I remember writing it, in a vague and hazy way, but I found myself surprised by its ending. It was the kind of punch you feel in your chest, in your throat, in your stomach. It brought back a flood of emotions that had laid dormant until this moment, tinged with bittersweet nostalgia, and I allowed myself a moment to sit and think about how my words still ring true. About how not much and so much has changed. There is so much about this poem I would alter in the present day--words I would highlight to play off each other, sentence structures I would shift, periods I would destroy destroy destroy. But I've written it as it's written, in its irritating way (and I may have shared this before, I don't know). This poem just makes me exceedingly grateful to my younger self for taking the time to preserve my thoughts and feelings, especially honest ones, as so much of what I write is exaggerated or fabricated. Anyway, perhaps this may serve as a little reminder for you all to go back and revisit your old self in your writing. Take the time. He/she may be slightly cringeworthy, (especially as far as drama goes), and you'll definitely want to polish up on your words (or just scrap the whole thing), but go easy on yourself. Appreciate it. Savor it. Get to know who you were as the person you are. --END OF PREACHY MOMENT--


This is pretty relatable. Especially the ending. :) thank you for sharing this with us, Madeline. It's lovely to catch a glimpse of the writer's heart occasionally, and this one gave us a glimpse of yours. It's a sweet gift, really.

I don’t thrive off of chaos: chaos thrives off of me.

I needed to hear this, Maddie... So relevant and timely. Thank you for your words ❤ I will go back and look at my old work and be unafraid! And more than that, be grateful to my younger writing self - especially for those moments of honesty (proud of your younger self, too!) which are the most generous moments of all. Will re-read your note when I need this reminder!

I needed to read this. Thank you.

Brother: Your character should drive a motorcycle.
Me: He can't. He's in the wilderness.
Brother: Then make it a four-wheel-drive motorcycle!