The Sweet Bird Of Youth

We all know about the varying frequencies in the sound spectrum. There are frequencies only animals like dogs can hear…those only a transmitter can hear….most complex of all, the sounds and feelings emanating only from certain segments of the population. To fully hear these, it calls for fully listening, not simply hearing.

I have in mind those one-of-a-kind sounds and feelings of children at play. You and I once made them, but have probably lost the frequency long ago. Generally it’s a high-pitched, raucous frequency of happy emotions from games and races, laughter and silliness. Our sweet bird of youth, remember…?

But that was then, this is now. We’re no longer children. Such sweet silliness across lawns and on schoolyards has no place in our serious adult days. Still, I find myself pausing every time. I can’t help resonating with those sounds and feelings emanating from that once-in-a-lifetime time.

Very likely this is because of the splendid simplicity of that time. When reality was what you could see and touch; truth was what your wise elders offered; when doubts were scarce, for there were so few doubting voices. Unlike now’s so seriously adult world, bristling with so many different burning bushes commanding your attentions. And your beliefs,

As an adult I have come to know that every ideology, every faith, every medication, every new war and new discovery comes with a dozen contradictory certifications. You shake your head and blink your eyes. Too much. You can’t help recalling the comfort of certitude that came with youth. And while more information has made me more informed, I cannot say it has made me more secure.


Listening to those giggling youngsters out there…. I’m trying to remain the adult who I am, while at the same time trying to reclaim some of the joy that I was. How perfectly grand it would be to be both.

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  • Appreciated this gift of youthful yearning ... The laughter of children at play is so 'sweet' ... "And while more information has made me more informed, I cannot say it has made me more secure." ... Yes ... and we worry more for our grandchildren whose sweet laughter and voices will eventually give way to the world we are leaving them ... 'Everyone to their posts' ...

  • In reply to Geezer:

    Sweet -- the operative word!

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