Short Story: The Silence of Death

Author's Note

This is a short story I wrote in the 7th grade. 1972. We were studying pollution. Not exactly uplifting. But what did you expect? I was a tween, although that word hadn’t been coined yet.

Somewhere in a galaxy, on a planet, one called Earth, a small child was crying in the crowded street.  The child stood up, and still crying, died.

No one noticed.  The child’s body became another piece of garbage.  No one even cared. 

The air seemed as though it were thick enough to grasp. 

An old man suddenly sat down, putting his hands to his head saying, “Oh God, what have we done to our Earth? What have we done?  I remember when there was such a thing as green grass, flowers, trees, animals, birds and clear blue skies.  I remember when it was hot and cold, when we had a sun.  Or when we could see stars and the moon.  And water, I remember sparkling, clear, clean water.  We used to go fishing.  But now the fish are all dead.  Oh dear God, what have we done?”

The streets were empty.  There were no sounds except the cold wind blowing through the trash in the streets. 

The wind blew on and on over the silent planet.   One which once was beautiful. 

The planet gave one last shudder, like that of a sinking ship just before it disappears below the sea, and then came a sound, one last sound.  It was that of a young boy.  He stood in the middle of one of the empty streets.  He was crying, only he was happy.  Crying the words “I love you God”, he died.

Suddenly the planet split into billions and billions of pieces. 

The galaxy was quiet.  There was no sound at all.   No rockets, no satellites, no trash, no pollution—only a continual silence.  The silence of death.   And God saw that it was good.

Excerpt from THE SILENCE OF DEATH by Dee Davis, Copyright ©1972 by Dee Davis. All rights reserved. Reprint only with permission from author. Please contact