Friday, July 31, 2020

Meditation 84

31 July 2020

I have their ear and carry it with me. I whisper in it, harangue it, speak sweet nothings to it. When I walk my dog, I take it with me, as open to the air as is her nose. I put it in my pocket with a phone that keeps the time. The ear knows we are grievable, the dog and I, that we merit words spilled like water from a cemetery faucet. (Take out the conditional, the active or passive verb, this sentence’s false engine.) The ear edits as it hears, with an ear to rendering sound sleek, not clotted. No judgment, just efficiency, the copy-editing beauty requires to tune the fork. Not the efficiency of the production line, but of the poetic line, which conveys no goods, makes no profit, throws off its baggage like a catastrophic alphabet. Lean over to pick up a lottery of words and sounds, gather them in a baseball cap, pass them around for others to put in order. Something will come of it, if to come is to arrive at the ear’s front porch. Correspondent breezes line up for the food bank in a stadium parking lot, bemoaning their lack of purpose or wage. Ambient sound is all sirens and weed whackers, tires on Kahekili Highway and mowers on the field out back, of palms and birds. As out of yesterday’s television a chorus of overcoming rolls through the living room and out the louvers. If we have another’s ear, if we feed it Alice Coltrane, gently water it before the sun gets too hot, we can caress it as it cries. Pull the plug and let sounds circle, disappear (we hope) into a forgiving quiet.

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