The Sound of Silence
(Ben Grace)

“Hello darkness, my old friend, I’ve come to talk with you again.” -Paul Simon

How would you describe your relationship with silence and solitude?

Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence

In restless dreams I walked alone
Narrow streets of cobblestone
‘Neath the halo of a street lamp
I turned my collar to the cold and damp
When my eyes were stabbed
By the flash of a neon light
That split the night
And touched the sound of silence

And in the naked light I saw
Ten thousand people, maybe more
People talking without speaking
People hearing without listening
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence

“Fools,” said I, “You do not know
Silence, like a cancer, grows
Hear my words that I might teach you
Take my arms that I might reach you”
But my words, like silent raindrops fell
And echoed in the wells, of silence

And the people bowed and prayed
To the neon god they made
And the sign flashed out its warning
In the words that it was forming
And the sign said, “The words of the prophets
Are written on the subway walls
And tenement halls”
And whispered in the sounds of silence

The reflection at the beginning of this episode was written and recorded by Ben Grace. Ben recorded the cover but he didn’t write the song, but you probably knew that already. This episode was produced by Rev. Jim Keat. Background tracks include Button Mushrooms by Podington Bear.

The Sound of Silence was written by Paul Simon in 1963-64 and recorded by Simon & Garfunkel in March 1964 at Columbia Studios in New York City for inclusion on their debut album, Wednesday Morning, 3 A.M.. Ironically, the album was a commercial failure and led to the group disbanding but after the song hit No. 1 on January 1, 1966 the iconic duo reunited and recorded their second album, Sounds of Silence.

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Ben Grace is an Australian singer/songwriter. You can find his music on Spotify and Soundcloud and Apple Music and all the places you would expect. And you can find out more about Ben on his website at

This season of Be Still and Go is supported in part by Convergence as they help share each episode with their community. (You should do the same!) Convergence is a network that supports the reshaping of organizations, congregations and leaders engaged in an age of movement from “organized religion” to “organizing religion” driven by the values of an inclusive, progressive theological vision for a more just world for all. Visit to find out more.

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