I recently saw this article What Prayer Is written by Thomas Green, SJ, more than 30 years ago. It’s a preface to his book Opening to God. It’s excellent. I recommend it for your Lenten reading.
Hearing or listening is a good metaphor for prayer. The good pray-er is above all a good listener. Prayer is dialogue; it is a personal encounter in love. When we communicate with someone we care about, we speak and we listen. But even our speaking is responsive: What we say depends upon what the other person has said to us. Otherwise we don’t have real dialogue, but rather two monologues running along side by side.