Saturday, January 8, 2011

Conversation is Decorated Silence

I was listening to a BBC piece today on poetry and one of the guests, in a reference to the rhythm of poetry used this phrase: "conversation is decorated silence." He said it was from the Elizabethan period. I like to think of sound in this way, particularly in the context that he was using it -- he had just listened to a poem in Serbian -- a language he doesn't understand -- and then heard it translated into English. He said he felt the essence of what the poem was about upon  hearing it in Serbian -- because of the rhythm and expression in the poet's voice.

To think of sounds in this manner, in some ways, makes it easier to tolerate those sounds that I might feel inappropriate in certain settings -- loud music in restaurants for instance -- at least a temporary tolerance. I would probably wind up walking out of the restaurant ultimately.

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