In the spirit of John Cage’s Purposeful Purposelessness, for some random time I’m allowing room for silence—raindrops.
snow chimes, a chickadee tsiiks for seed
a pencil scratches paper
in the night the house knocks at the door
“Ruined fingers, why he can’t play the stand-up bass anymore.”
dry grass chattering
an onion, the sound of a tear
the roof avalanches heavy boot steps
the sewing machine chugs, the sun inches across the sky
a barred bird, squeaky bearings
this house that is a stranger to me cracks time
aphatos, |əˈfāZHə|, speechless
those moths dancing in the lamp light are my words.
you hear me?
“go into your closet to pray”
I remember the sound of a raven’s wing in a place where even wind was a stranger
“that’s the floor shaking with laughter”
the wood stove ticks a lover’s slow tango
“Having a place means that you know what a place means. . .”
he sleeps while snow blankets the window. . .
and that was all the rain there was
the waitress slips one polished glass over the other, tiny bells in the wind
pots and pans and garlic
“je ne suis qu’un petit bruit .”
I am but a small noise.
bluebird arrives with spring
Madeleine Peyroux sings, “The things I’ve seen. . .”
and you, wild as wind
this morning I woke to a robin’s song
windows rattling in their casings. smells of cold.
the clock ticks through a dark night
a grain of sand arrived on the wind. I hear the desert calling. . .
the smallest of birds calls out the silence
mind, mind, mind, mind, mind
the yellow stillness before a thunderstorm
watering boiling on the stovetop, then not
Cage’s pin drop, then not, pot, water drops, tape reels
©Susan Austin, all rights reserved
“Having a place means that you know what a place means. . .” quoted from Gary Snyder
“je ne suis qu’un petit bruit,” from Tristan Tzara
“The things I’ve seen. . .” by Madeleine Peyroux
“But What About the Noise of Crumpling Paper Which He Used to Do in Order to Paint the Series of ‘Papiers Froissés’ or Tearing Up Paper to Make ‘Papiers Déchirés’? Arp Was Stimulated by Water (Sea, Lake and Flowing Waters Like Rivers), Forests” by John Cage