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More Than We Know

Oh, all of the noise
Shut it out
Be still, child
We can learn what it is
That we lost
When we grew up….

These lines open a song I wrote several years ago.

This world is noisy. There’s no need to list the distractions and disturbances that begin the moment we wake up. You know what they are.

Oh, all of the noise…shut it out.

I write and think and my eyes wander from the room I am in to my living room window. The grayish-brown branches of a crepe myrtle tree reach for the sun. Beyond I see the gigantic white blossoms of the magnolia, and green, waxy leaves painted on to sturdy branches that bend and sway. A leaf falls and I can imagine the soft crackle as it hits the pavement below. Shadows lend depth and color and drama to every inch of the tree, and the surrounding bushes, and my neighbor’s yard and house.

Be still, child.

I am still. My senses adapt to the quiet beauty of the scene before me; the hum of the air conditioning, the framed glass square of trees and sky, and there is a stirring in my spirit.

We can learn what it is that we lost when we grew up.

I lean my head back on the sofa and gaze out at the sky and I remember who I was when I was new to the world.

Sitting by the piano singing spirituals with my father and my sisters. Singing with a lump in my throat like I wrote the words: “All my trials, Lord, soon be over.”

Standing in the garage watching my mother shape and mold yet another piece of clay and knowing that soon it would have to be brave and endure the fiery heat of the kiln. It would get fired and then cool down and join the bust of father Abraham, who looked wise and ancient before one of my sisters made him cross-eyed with a permanent marker.

Running like the wind everywhere; from class to recess, from Sunday school to the woods near church, from my grandmother’s house to the bayou. I remember stopping often to listen to the calls of southern birds and the wind in the woods.

Eyes closed, I watch these visions and recall what Madeleine once told me: “We are all more than we know.”

I am the child that I was and the artist that I am. I am moved to tears by the great Artist’s wonderful works to the children of men. Happy to be here, in this moment, thinking on these things- refreshed and ready to respond with my own joyful song.

Gileah Taylor

Gileah has been writing songs since she was in single digits. Her favorite corner of the house is the living room where she has a sound system complete with a microphone, a Gibson Dove and an upright piano. Husband Chris and children Clara, Mercie and Timothy make up her nightly audience. Gileah loves to read and think and write and sing. In that order.

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