Allowing the Silence to Speak

I don’t know to what culture to attribute this, but here’s a proverb:

“The only worthwhile words are ones that improve upon the silence.”

It is difficult to be cogent in one’s communications, no matter verbal or written.

My mother taught me at an early age the “lost art” of proofreading book reports in my primary school days. She helped me on my initial report (and ONLY on that initial report), imparting the wisdom someone had passed on to her in regard to the proper manner to present one’s ideas. She had me read my words aloud to her, and with each pass I made, she seemed to reject everything.” There are still a lot of stones in the lentils,” she said again and again, and I crossed off each of the stones until only a few lines remained. And so I had my report.

I never forgot that day, and while I do not live up to the ideal of the proverb, or remember the lesson of my youth, I certainly try as often as I am able to achieve it.

Categories: Reflections

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