Sometimes the quiet is deafening. I feel as if I have to speak or move or clean or cajole to fill the space. This has been the visits of the last couple of days with Dad. He is always happy to see me and welcomes the visit. Yesterday he told me that he had been hoping I would stop over. He asked if I had mental telepathy. I smiled at his question. So we exchange the regular chit chat and then it gets quiet. He looks off into space and I find myself asking what he is thinking about. He always says nothing. I wonder what that nothing really could be. What is going on in his mind? I wonder if he is scared or relieved or even maybe excited at the thought that he will soon be reunited with all those who have gone before. Then I think that maybe I shouldn't ask what he is thinking about because it must be so intensely personal. Thoughts only meant for the one who is so deeply entranced by them at that moment. Millions of miles away from the little living room that overlooks the sea. Then the quiet is interrupted by a sudden attack of coughing to which I find myself asking in a worried tone 'Are you ok?'. He always says I'm ok. Then again it is quiet and that is when I break out True Compass by Edward Kennedy ready to read aloud for an hour at a time. Dad is always an eager listener. I hope it is because he wants to hear the story and not just disguise the silence that is waiting to deafen us once again. In any case I will continue to bring my book and face the quiet as I know he would if our situation was reversed.