A nun told me a few years ago
that when I listen to the sound of the bell
the important thing to do is to keep listening to it
as the sound fades away and transforms into silence,
and then even beyond that.
I love the sound of the bell,
the sharp edge cutting into the moment,
then the reverberations,
rising and falling,
spreading, softening, fading,
creating a path into reality for me,
if I will take it.
Sometimes I remember the nun’s words,
and then the silence around me
is filled with the sound of hundreds of faded bells,
transformed now into the twittering of swallows,
and the clattering of the dustbin man’s lorry,
and the voice of my beloved, singing.