The Sound of Loneliness

It’s just you and me here tonight, and I’m lonely in this old room. Isn’t it funny how you can be lonely with a crowd of people around?

We are a shallow people. So afraid to let others into the person that we really are. If the truth be known, we are scared to let ourselves into that place. We mask it with TV, and laughter or booze-filled nights. Anything but the silence of who were are.

What is the sound of one hand clapping? Zen asks. It is the sound of whisky in dimly lit bars, and television blared in tiny apartments of one, art answers. It is the muffled sound of tears in lonely beds, and earbuds piping music in through another jog, or the tap of fingernails on touch screens, aching to touch a stranger refracted in LCD.

And so we travel this life, lonely people, bumping into lonely people, working, living, laughing, and yet, never knowing how to fill their souls. The truly great among us learn to turn off our souls, and to be happy never being known.

Our souls are meant to connect. What we really need, what we really want, is for someone to know us fully, and fill the void inside of us.

And yet, vulnerability is a dangerous place. There is a reason it makes us run. There are liars, and cheats and backstabbers and gossips. There are asinine cynics, wounded so deeply they have nothing but to point and laugh at our nakedness in an attempt to feel something . So, like Adam and Eve, with everything to hide, we cover our souls.

And this is why artists are so brave. At least the good ones anyway. Because they can see life in universals, and filter it into metaphor and beauty, and then add a spoonful of sugar to let the medicine go down. Either that, or they scream the truth so loud that we wince and cover our ears, until the blow is softened by lesser artists who parrot the truth in a quest for relevance.

But either way, art provides a place for souls to connect, however briefly, and find relief. The patron can, through artistic medium, now articulate that foggy mess of conflicted life that leaves them breathless.

This is why I deify art. Because it is the human experience reflected back at us so clearly, that can we find our way.


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