To cry is to weep, to almost involuntarily release tears and whimper. It is usually associated with something bad having happened or in experiencing physical pain. It can feel awful often, crying is because of a loss, such as the death of a loved one. It can also be from a loss of a friendship or a valued object. Sometimes a person can say a terrible thing, an accusation maybe or a judgment. These too are grounds for crying
Crying has a range of sounds. Sniffing, caterwauling, blubbering, wailing. you can tell that I am crying if you hear these kinds of sounds. I can cry on the inside too, no sound, just an ambiance and a look. I could cry on the inside out of grieving, or out of the loneliness of a senior feeling abandoned, forgotten. That kind of crying, though silent, eats away at the life-force of a person. How might I better hear that kind of cry?
To cry is also a way of speaking. The Town Crier wore a red coat with gold trim, white breeches, a three cornered hat and sounded a big bell or gong or drum, before speaking. He made public pronouncements starting Oyez, Oyez, meaning pay attention. He was CNN back then. Some of the pronouncements were such things as no urinating or defecating in the river the day before the water was to be drawn to make the beer.
Crying expresses pain. I hurt so I release by crying and feel better because of it. The silent version is a crying to suppress pain and send a silent signal for help, for comfort, for relief. It is said that at the moment of death it is common for the person to cry out, a last cry. Crying out is expressing frustration, defeat, complete submission. This kind of crying says, “I have nothing more to give”
Only humans cry, the kind with tears. To hold back crying takes considerable tenacity and a few, usually men, manage to hold it in until sometime in their forties or fifties. Then it pours, can be called the longest exhale. We can discern a cry of seeking solace, from cries of expressing/releasing pain, from cries of sheer joy.
To cry is to be human. And oh yes, or Oyez, woman have also been Town Criers.