Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Potting Soil

Potting Soil

The tenderness with which
a singer handles the quiet
even before the song

will slay you if you let it
into your ears, if you remind
yourself that what we hear

the song emerge from does
not count as silence.
Can true silence be heard,

what would that sound like.
We follow sound, watch
the voice sparrowing

through the song, each
breath a branch. Lift
us, we want to be carried

by a song, to be slayed,
to be taken above life, no
cumbersome dartboard ear.


  1. A deep and moving poem that will speak to me for some time to come, I think.

  2. 'sounds of silence, my old friend'...once a song long ago.
    You may be too young to remember this one, mi amiga.

    Your query on this one is epic in that both science and religions have professed that all comes from something and cannot come from nothing. So the silence must be that something.

    Silence and white space are synonymous

    This piece eases us into this conundrum when music is used as the narative.


  3. To find the quiet before the song. . . wonderful subject for a poem.

    Have you read Sara Maitland's "A Book of Silence"? She examines/experiences many kinds of silence. Fascinating what she discovers.

  4. Fantastic and the one before and before and before...I find music painfully uplifting...feel the vibrations in the air before they coherently interfere and become expressed it truly when you said 'slayed'...Happy fourth tomorrow!

  5. "sparrowing"--yes!
    "each breath a branch"--yes!
    "dartboard ear" has me puzzling, and I'm old enough to remember "slay" as a slang expression, as in "You slay me," which doesn't feel right here.

    I love the topic. The more I pay attention to birds and compare what they do to what we do with voice, our apparent NEED for chatter, whether or not it makes sense or was called for, the more intriguing it all is, though I doubt we'll ever really KNOW what that's all about.

  6. Thank you, everyone, for these kind and intriguing comments.

    Marcoantonio, hello, darkness, my old friend....:)

    Maureen, I don't know "A Book of Silence." I must read that!! Thanks for this.

    John, I was wondering about "you slay me." I know that some people think of it as "You make me feel overwhelmed" (how I meant it), whereas others think of it as "You are hysterically funny." Glad you voiced your thoughts.


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