The power of a whisper
When a voice is raised in shouting and yelling, especially directed at me, I just want to laugh. And I do just that sometimes, which seems to intensify the anger and volume of the raised voice. It is laughable to me because if anyone needs to raise their voice that means that person already lost — the argument, the composure, the head. No matter how loud the other side is, that will not make them right. Seems like a lot of people don’t realize it, and it seems that this disability to keep the voice and argument down is a prerequisite for politicians and other people making rules and orders for us.
When the words are correct and right and proper and truthful, there is no need to raise the voice. Even a whisper will do to convey the meaning of those words. Even when the words convey something difficult and sad and absolute — just a whisper is needed. Maybe even not just needed but required — to speak softly when saying something powerful. Simple words, no exaggerations or fancy ornamentations or double entendres or sarcasm or irony so there is no possibility of misunderstanding.
Of course, on the other side, the recipient of those words has to be receptive to this quiet speech. And that is the whole other thing — how to ignore the shouting and yelling and extract only what is being muffled and stifled? And how to ignore the loud and so sure of themselves people, who think they know everything better. How to hear the uncomfortable and unpleasant truth when it is just said and not shouted? Who will be receptive to hearing the whisper?
There Will Come Soft Rains by Sara Teasdale
There will come soft rains and the smell of the ground,
And swallows circling with their shimmering sound;
And frogs in the pools singing at night,
And wild plum trees in tremulous white,
Robins will wear their feathery fire
Whistling their whims on a low fence-wire;
And not one will know of the war, not one
Will care at last when it is done.
Not one would mind, neither bird nor tree
If mankind perished utterly;
And Spring herself, when she woke at dawn,
Would scarcely know that we were gone.