a tune in the willows in the shimmy of Spring
overheard on the speaker while slicing a peach.
and as we were trying to explain all we’d heard
(the music in the words) further words emerged
ancient words: abrasive like peace
equivocal like love, subtle as a lampshade.
we ran our tongues round these words
made of the remains of tiny sea creatures
from a time before words
only the music of waves sifting and settling.
they were the mouths inside our words
a chorale tuned in silence profound
never to convey the music in words
(these crummy words: this noun, this adjective).
and surely more words will follow
and more music too, a recursive tumble
uncovering wonders, uncovering nothing
and over and over, again and again.
Image: Depiction of coral in the Juliana Anicia Codex, a 6th-century copy of Dioscorides‘ De Materia Medica c/- Wikipedia. Today (28 January) I’m hosting the bar at Dverse the poets’ pub and we’re focussing on finding that fantastic first line. Here’s Gail Newman’s original poem Trust. You can read more of her work here and here.
And since this poem is about words and music (kinda), here’s something beautiful: Anna Netrebko, Elīna Garanča singing the Flower Duet from Lakme by Delibes – wonders indeed.