Radio Silence

A draught comes in through my open windows, stirring the stillness in my candlelit room. Outside, the silhouette of houses and trees absorb light and reflect none—pitch black, against a grey crop of sky. My dogs bark, their voices magnified by echoes. Distantly, another dog answers. But there’s no sound of technology: no televisions, no music, nothing save for the tapping of my fingers against the keyboard, the glow of my laptop illuminating the gloom. This brownout feels a bit like radio silence, a bit like the provincial quiet I grew up in. It feels like a much-needed pause, a break from a decidedly urban life.

And just when you’re starting to grow accustomed to the semi-darkness, to the silence, to the temporary disconnect, the lights come back on.

At least you’ve remembered something important: breathe. (Your old mantra, remember.)

Until next time.

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MNL

The city is always awake, always thrumming the tones of life, always filled up to the brim with so many things one could never quite catch up. I live in this city, where the lights are like suns that never leave for the other side of the world, perpetually present.  I live in this city, where the air is tainted a drab gray from all the smoke, where the streets are littered with garbage pretending to be wild flowers and failing at it miserably, where vehicles provide the music to which everyone unconsciously dances.

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