Drabble 165 – Susurrus

A photo of pews in a church.

I haven’t spent a lot of time in churches. My family doesn’t practice religion, which is not to say that they’re not religious, only that the only times I’ve been to churches have been during daycare, weddings, funerals, and my own baptism. Oh, and that time I was tricked into attending a religious festival on Halloween.

When I do occasionally venture into a church, as I did last weekend, I can understand the appeal. The hushed sense of reverence, the comfort of rituals, the assurance of a meaning, a purpose, a plan that we’re not capable of comprehending. It feels important in a way that most of the spaces I normally inhabit don’t. I like that about it, even if the space isn’t really for me.

Anyway, here’s a drabble.

SUSURRUS

(n.) from Latin for “a humming or whispering”

A murmuring, whispering, or humming sound.

There are whispers tucked into each pew, between the pages of hymnbooks, behind the lips of every worshipper. More whispers than can be counted, more than could ever be heard by God or man.

Maybe that’s why it never feels truly quiet in the church, Eliza thinks. She knows it’s improper—more than once she’s been told it’s holiness that fills the church with a presence even when she’s cleaning alone—but she can’t help but think of all those words trapped in every crevice, reflected in brass, caught in smoke and carried upward, where they may or may not be heard.

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