Making my usual morning coffee and toast, 7am on Christmas morning, I became aware of an unusual silence. It came from outside, where so much was not happening, so many cars not going by, so many trucks parked for the day, so many planes not flying overhead. It made me think of Santa, and how he might long ago have had the whole night to himself while the world slept. By the time I stepped outside, though, a car was coming by, and another, and the poignancy was gone.
Maybe there was a moment, sometime in the night or early morning, when all people were happy right where they were, and felt no need to be somewhere else, and the great white noise of machines stopped for that glimmer of time, opening up for all to hear, a clear, crystalline silence.