The Silent Sparrow

The house sparrows felt at home in the noise and din of another day
Chirping, chirruping, chattering, tweeting all they had to say
Banter was their birth-right, they made their presence known
Quarrel by name and nature, seeds of gossip daily sewn

But one young sparrow merely listened, to the chatter of all the rest
He did not squeak or squawk or squeal, silence suited him the best
In quiet contemplation, he sat amongst the crowd
Feeling the hum of their vibration, the ebb and flow of quiet to loud

The other sparrows had given up, on invitations to converse
Spending days in quiet stillness?  They could imagine nothing worse
But they humoured the young sparrow, a topic of gossip amongst the flock
As they bickered and bantered, swarmed and chanted, squabbled and occasionally mocked

But the young sparrow stayed true to his purpose, staying silent amongst the song
Until the day he sensed a vibration with the frequency of something wrong
From his beak there came a sound so loud the sparrows nearly fell from the tree
The noise carried one command: it told the flock to flee

Just in time they scattered as a diving hawk came into view 
When all had fled to safety, they asked the quiet one how he knew
Of the sparrowhawk's approach and the impending disaster that loomed that day
But the silent sparrow said nothing, just sat and listened, as was his way.
Photo by Dan Hamill on

I sometimes wish I could listen as much as the silent sparrow, but I’m a bit of a chatterer, especially when I’m talking about writing, or reading, or meditation, or music…anything really. I just have so much to say! I’m heading on a silent meditation course in a couple of months though: ten days with no talking, writing or reading. That should give me some insight into the world of the silent sparrow.

4 thoughts on “The Silent Sparrow

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