Monday 10 October 2011

Silence is Golden?

I didn’t have a huge number of friends when I was a kid, just a few very close ones; I was never in a gang.

A lot of the time my play was solitary, a lot of it in my imagination.

A ways up the road, and across a few more was a wood, and at the back of the wood an old abandoned house, in fact the woods were the overgrown gardens of the estate that had once been part of the place.

It was terrifying to go in those woods, and I never once managed to enter the house but for a while I went there, daring myself to enter.

But I was too scared, so I ended up playing some sort of imaginary game on the grass slopes of the street that ran along side.

It was here that I made friends with two other boys who lived in the street.

One day we found a cement mixer in the bushes and we took it in turns to sit inside and turn the handle.

After a few exploratory sits it was decided that we should turn the handle completely so that whoever was inside tumbled head over heels inside.

The other two boys did it.

I was too sacred and refused.

They started to call me names – “K-ing A-dams, K-ing A-dams”.

I ran away.

I don’t know if it was before this, or as a consequence but I remember sometime my mum telling me – “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never help me.”

I repeated it many times.

It was a constant companion in those youthful days.

Now that I’m older I still think about it – was she right?

Words do hurt me, and I think they hurt others?

But the worse thing is, I believe the dictum she gave me is incomplete.

It’s silence that really hurts.

Especially from a loved one.

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