everything you are missing

Regan Spinks

Brenau University, Georgia, USA

Why don’t you talk more? you ask
as if talking somehow makes you
more intelligent by default, more worthy:
noise equates to space, and space to power.

you fail to see the merit that lies not
in noise, but its absence;
in drinking in your surroundings, voracious,
until they become interwoven into the very fabric of you.

someone once said we are a product of
everyone we’ve ever known,
but i’d take it a step further:
i am a product of everyone i’ve ever heard.

i am the pair of shorts that i bought on sale, now my favorite,
after i heard a stranger tell her friend about them;
i am the wing joint that became my family’s weekly
dinner spot because i heard people raving about it.

You should talk more, you say
but you do not realize that as you are talking,
i am taking stock of the timbre of your voice,
the rustle of leaves, the chirping of birds.

as you are talking, i hear the fatigue
in your words, the way you grow
weary from the monotony of small talk, yet
make no effort to cease.

as you are talking, i listen–
i hear you.
and you do not realize
everything you are missing.