You Came to Hear: rondeau redoubled

The music that you came to hear:
a sonic bridge that helps you cross
some gulf of time no longer near,
or spend as a mere hour’s loss,

so in the maelstrom sound’s great fosse
you find your sorrows light to bear,
your jagged rocks made soft with moss,
the music that you came to hear?

What in these tunes allays your fears,
makes sunshine from an endless dross
and with a modicum of beer
a sonic bridge that helps you cross

in mirthful, bright and shiny gloss
from disconnection, felt so clear,
to friends who share a sense of loss:
some gulf of time no longer near.

And when at last the end appears:
last call, that winging albatross
whose warning bursts the happy sphere,
you’ve suffered a mere hour’s loss

and gained a bright and shiny gloss.
Now, when the new day’s dawn appears
and there may seem no way across,
you can reflect back in the mirror
the music that you came to hear.

05 MAY 2017

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Listen: cinquain

Listen.
Let the sound come;
as you sense this new song,
pretend you just developed ears,
and hear.

Listen.
The sensation
of experience finds you;
feel the music filling your bones
with light.

Listen.
What you’re hearing
isn’t just some symphony
composed of random, crashing waves
of sound.

Listen
to the heartbeat
underneath the octaves;
in that small space between the breaths
it sounds.

Listen.
Let the sound come;
if you let yourself sing,
you can alter the melody
of life.

09 FEB 2017

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Listen to the Music

I wonder how much of our time we spend actually listening to music?

I don’t mean seeing a band in a bar (where there’s all kinds of distractions you’re probably focused on), or listening at work or while driving, or kicking up the surround sound when a Dolby sound movie comes on the TV. I mean, sitting still, without trying to accomplish or be 17 other things, without conversation, without dishes to wash. Seems to me that if you consider yourself a music lover, or more to the point call yourself a musician, and don’t spend at least some dedicated portion every day to just listening to music, then it probably takes you longer and longer to get “into it” each time you put it on or play it.

By denigrating music as a soundtrack to more important things, we lose the beauty and magic of music as it truly is — an art for art’s sake, with no tangible benefit other than perhaps temporary change of mood.

Makes music seem more worth doing, because it NEEDS to be done. It is not a sideline, an afterthought or a minor player.

Music is the fabric that defines a culture, makes it technology and achievements worth celebrating, learning, remembering and passing on. Without it, we are left with only philosophies of how to do, and none to tell us why.

14 AUG 2013

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The ears have it: a curtal sonnet

From eyesight, there are half a dozen words
that represent a myriad of lies.
The surface, then, is never proof enough;

relying on appearance is absurd.
It puts us in a world of slick disguise,
transmitting second-hand its show and bluff.

There are no such illusions from the ear:
with sound, we gather in, and become wise.
Discerning what is real is never tough;
the undertone is always sharp and clear
enough.

03 MAY 2011

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Look Inward, Angel: common measure

“As any fool could plainly see,
and you can see it plainly,”
were words my father spoke to me
in jest, sometimes, but mainly

to illustrate a simple point:
that often, a solution
is right in front of us, and needs
from us no contribution.

Perhaps he oversimplified,
attempting to be witty;
but nonetheless, some grain of truth
can be found in this ditty.

We know the truth, what’s right and wrong;
there’s no need of a teacher.
To find the essence of this life
requires no saint or preacher.

The wise men all say look within;
and still, we focus outward.
Is it because we’re deaf, or stupid?
Maybe we’re just cowards.

02 MAY 2011

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Follow

Listen in the dark, and follow
where my voice leads on, away,
through the woods beyond the hollow
where the cheerful sparrows play
on into the mist that thickens
where the Spanish moss hangs low
on the spreading live oak branches
as we pass, silent, below.

Here the sun makes no impression,
for the canopy is thick;
mossy roots criss-cross the pathway,
mute our footsteps; here, the trick
is to remember without seeing,
gauge by sense of smell and touch,
so that if you feel like fleeing,
you cannot reveal too much.

Listen, can you hear the whisper
of the almost stagnant breeze,
like the faintly fading flicker
of a hair bent on your knee?
Your own breathing now is heavy,
louder than the crunch of leaves,
than the slow lap of the levee
echoing the distant seas.

Listen in the dark, and follow
where my voice is almost gone;
feel your face find the cool hollow
in the air it lingers on.
Listen for the fading footsteps
that leave no trace on the ground,
only soft and silent shadows,
memories lost to sylvan sound.

23 JUL 2005

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The voice you hear

The voice you hear is not my voice; lost in the sound of your own making,
these words were new-forged long before the human throat began to hum,
and then began to form the shapes of bringing-into-being charms.

Before the echo of that utter, in the silence between seconds
where the space of breath expands beyond time and being
these words lived aeons and grew old awaiting tongues to speak their names.

The voice you hear is not my voice; it is the sound that throbs beneath
a single raindrop’s spattering. It is your voice I hear;
and yet you have not mouth or tongue, nor one sigh’s force to use.

04 JUN 2005

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