The night has a life all it’s own. There are sounds and smells and tastes that are exclusive to the darkness. There is also a space there where sounds and lights and smells should be.
I sit with only the light from the lamp shining. Beyond that circle, there is nothing. I know the rest of the house is there, of course, but one of the peculiarities of the human mind is encapsulated in the phrase “out of sight, out of mind”. If you don’t see it, it does not exist.
As I sit and allow the words and thoughts to chase one another around my brain, I hear many things I would otherwise miss. The sound of the small space heater. It is a soothing low tone to match the much welcomed heat it creates. The sound of the refrigerator motor. The sound of a car driving by. Where are they going at this hour? I live in an area where there is rarely traffic, so each vehicle is a question.
Then there is the sound that comes from me. It has been my observation that if you allow yourself to sit quietly with absolutely no distractions, you can hear the sounds of your body simple being. Sometimes you can ‘hear’ your heart beating. Yes, it is generally the feel of the heartbeats in your ears or some such thing, but I like to give a poetic turn. In my case, I hear a whistling in my head. Those of you who know me will immediately jump to a very funny remark right about now, but the truth is, there is something called tinnitus and it can be maddening to those who deal with it. I don’t know if I suffer from tinnitus, but I DO know there is a whistling, and sometimes a roaring, inside my head and it can be overwhelming.
So, at this time of night, when there is no commotion, no television, no radio, no conversation, that sound in my head is my only companion. That and these words. These thoughts that bring themselves to the fore and scream to be let out. Thus, the night speaks.