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House Of Silence

Written by: Philip Levine | Biography
 The winter sun, golden and tired, 
settles on the irregular army 
of bottles. Outside the trucks 
jostle toward the open road, 
outside it's Saturday afternoon, 
and young women in black pass by 
arm in arm. This bar 
is the house of silence, and we drink 
to silence without raising our voices 
in the old way. We drink to doors 
that don't open, to the four walls 
that dose their eyes, hands that run, 
fingers that count change, toes 
that add up to ten. Suspended 
as we are between our business 
and our rest, we feel the sudden peace 
of wine and the agony of stale bread. 
Columbus sailed from here 30 years ago 
and never wrote home. On Saturdays 
like this the phone still rings for him.