The United States of Noise (re-post)

This is an old post dating back from 2018
Though it feels like I wrote it more than a decade ago
I now find it strangely …needed.
To me, at least.
To you, maybe.



Watching the news in the evening, after a hard day of work…not talking to each other, because…. « it’s the news and any decent adult needs to keep informed of everything that is going on in the world…. »

Now Abruptly turn it off. Just for fun. Just to see
Question. Ponder. Enjoy.

Switch it on again.

Urgency to shut mouths.
Eagerness to quiet everything adding to the inner chaos building up
Speakers, interviewees, commercials, politicians, smiling people, get it on.
Urgency to quiet the one in ourselves 

Like we would plug our ears to an endless flow of shrieking tires.

Not informed, but afloat
With all the waste drifting along
Those plastic thoughts cluster to shape filthy continents.
We’re all citizens of a land made of crushed cans
And rags of old clothes.

On your right, a gift shop, with collapsible selfie sticks.
Please: Help your self.

Perfectly knowing where all of this leads to , what makes us grab the remote control at around 8 PM,
And to connect to the United States of Noise?

Always filling in… like throwing earth at a springing water source.
Quick, quick, make this silence shut up.

Close the doors so we won’t hear it.
Strap it real tight, so it won’t grow.

Turn it off.

(…)

Switch it on again.

Unbelievable, mesmerizing, 
There is so much going on inside the plastic box.
So many incentives to rebel. And so little rebellion.

As an obedient baby slave, I also suckle from this wave-feeding.
Mmmh, it tastes so good, other people’s stupidity…It shows how intelligent I must be.
And that suffering is so distant. How lucky we must be around here.
Lower your heads now.
Grab a phone and go to work.

No wind, however, on this deaf continent.
But gusts of opinions and men running with the flow of ideas.
Left wing. right wing. Left. Right…
Eventually falling down and drowning anyway.

Penguins innocently stare at illusionary icebergs floating by along the currents.
Clumsy and majestic, abundantly useless, they know noise always fades away.

Still, opportunities for encounters remain. They are laying low beneath layers of noise.
Coiled in a double helix, they wait under the crusts of idiocy.

Turn on all the screens, TVs, tablets, telephones.
Silence waits.

Sound all the rings, push all the notifications, buy as much as you can possibly gulp,
Silence waits.

Hum all the hummers you can, switch on all the stations, 
Fill the air with product-songs.
Feed these plastic thoughts and rubber desires…
Plug it all at once on the flickering billboards. 

There is no need to blink.
Even this nanosecond of presence to yourself shall disappear.
It does not matter, for in the background of it all
Silence waits.



Franck Joseph
©FJ Feb 2018 All Rights Reserved

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Photo Credits
©Samir Marquis @sammarquisphotos
All rights reserved

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