From Call to Commitment:
“Because St. Francis was incessantly concerned to deepen his life of union with God, he set aside special periods of time for more concentrated prayer.
“He would often withdraw and seek God in solitude, and the hermitages which so abounded in the countryside around Assisi were ideally suited to this purpose: the Carceri, for example, Greccio, La Verna, Fonte Colombo, and many others. These undeveloped and wild surroundings furnished abundant material for his penitential prayer as he wept for his own sins and those of the entire world.
“But, on the other hand, the open countryside beyond the sites of the actual hermitages moved him to joyful praise of God: ‘He made himself insensible to all external noise, and, bridling his external senses with all his strength and repressing the movements of his nature, he occupied himself with God alone (1 Celano 71)’ ”
“When you feel invited to remain in silence at Our Lord’s feet like Magdalen just looking at Him with your heart, without saying anything, don’t cast about for any thoughts or reasonings, but just remain in loving adoration. Follow the whisperings of the Holy Ghost. If He invites you to beg, beg; if to be silent, remain silent; if to show your misery to God, just do so. Let Him play on the fibers of your heart like a harpist, and draw forth the melody He wishes for the Divine Spouse.” Blessed Columba Marmion