A BIRTHDAY GIFT OF SOUND AND SILENCE BY MICHAEL HARRISON

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September 1, 2015 · Posted in Miscellany 

 

 

Michael Harrison

 

 Michael Harrison relaxes in his garden

 

There is not a whole lot of celebration going on this particular birthday

Just grateful for still being on the field, and that the celestial manager has seen fit to leave me in for perhaps another few innings

I was allowed to make a quick stop yesterday to pick up my new hearing aids

They are a mixed blessing indeed, and without a doubt, the most expensive present I’ve ever indulged myself

I now enjoy the beauty of hearing birds that I haven’t heard for many years, and hearing the hushed whispers of my grandchildren without having to ask them to increase their volume,

Sometimes while in the garden I imagine

I can hear plants and the earth talking

However, I find it only a brief interlude until the cacophony of the world intrudes, which in turn, makes me wince and oft times cry out, “what the hell is that noise?”

My ever-patient Sue informs me that the hideous noise I just heard was only the kitchen timer that called her back to the stove

Funny, I always thought that timer was just a pleasantly soft little warning, on those rare occasions that I was close enough to hear it

I had no idea that the cutting of vegetables could be so loud—not to mention my own voice that I now barely recognize

I appreciate what these gadgets allow me to hear—and for what I am desirous of hearing—but the relief of returning to my hushed world when I remove them at night is palpable

And oh, so welcoming

Michael Harrison retired from the book business after 42 years working as a field representative for several publishing houses including Houghton Mifflin Company and W.W. Norton.. He and his wife Sue live in Oakland, California.

 

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