The Burden of Silence


Freedom, to me, in its most basic form is the ability to openly express one’s thoughts and opinions.

Although freedom manifests itself in a variety of different ways (all of which are worth as much attention) including those in relation to one’s philosophy and lifestyle, I have found my freedom of expression as the most difficult privilege of mine to exercise. Speaking, and doing so intentionally and truthfully, is difficult. However, being silent is aggravating. And not to mention unbelievably dull.

“Speak!” I might scream within my cerebral chambers;
The dear and delightful dwelling place of my undetected deliberations.
“Speak, if you dare!”
Thoughts most honest; most intimate
Unrealised by my vocal stairway
Words at the rear of the tongue –
Unaccounted behind my 2-rowed, white gateway
Words subdued beneath the palate –
Ahead: agitated lips seeking occupation
Debilitating hesitation
Inward vexation
Silent huffs and puffs
Time flown far and forgotten.
“Speak!” insists the dispiriting and dreadful dwelling place of dead discourse
“Speak, if you dare!”
I do not dare.
I do so wish.

Oyena-Yena Bele,
Somerset College