All are gathered in a circle,
there is the sound of a light rain
tapping out a rhythm on
taut black umbrellas and weeping
and the shuffling of feet.

A town square is littered,
with flickering votives,
cellophane bouquets,
wet teddy bears
and deflated balloons.
The wax is melted, a burnt wick
smell mingles with rotting flowers.

We all know the scene.
We know it all too well.

“Let us observe a moment of silence.”
An awkward moment, not silent at all.
Coughing, crying, feet scuffing dirt,
lots of little sounds in clouds of despair.

Everyone knows what silence is.
We rise from deep dreamless sleep everyday,
and tumble into it with abandon every night.
The one with no guns, no bombs, no hate.

A moment without beginning or end,
the one that never comes or goes,
the one with no one in it, beneath the dream,
Eternal, without measure, or span.

Stop pretending you don’t know what it is.