red sailing

My Pop Matters essay got me pondering time, place and music. I’m thinking music, in some vital cultural sense, becomes ‘merely’ a sound after its moment. Of course it can be a beautiful sound that we may wish to return to again and again. But we return to it as a cultural artifact propelled for the most part by nostalgia. Music is powerfully transportive. Yet we can never apprehend it with fresh ‘in-the-moment’ ears ever again.

That Zeitgeist Called New Music

It strikes at a moment too sharp for stale
repetition. Pleasing sound is nothing
to quiet down. Yet reprisal’s a vale
echo–one arrival is allowed. Sing,

by all means, arched into time’s faltering
applause. Memory accompanies death’s
penchant for time-bound shadow. Why not bring
long notes that tempt the future since our breath’s
too short to box hit singles? Here and now

is the chance to alter prior arrangement
as habit flattens the grand piano
haunting the back parlor. Let sound foment

the secret chord ripe ears suspect is there.
Ephemera make light work of moment’s air.

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