In our house, silence was a large bureau, in the living room everyone walked around; the bureau we couldn’t place cups on without coasters, the bureau that was great-great someone’s that no one remembered, or cared deeply about. Silence was the cage in the kitchen with a large, mean hyena that everyone fed lest it scream like a wailing ghost. Silence was the weather we watched in the papers and on the news, awaiting hurricanes or tornados, brisk sleet, and silver thaws. Silence was everywhere. It was in our dining room. We shared our meals and did not mention its place screaming at the table, its gnawing on our toes underneath a fallen napkin.