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For the past few months the subject of all my words has been music. This has not been known to me, nor have I noticed it until now. The awareness of it came to me alongside another striking revelation : the art of words is worthless. Wordplay, alliteration, phrasing, double meanings, - these are absolutely and incontrovertibly nothing. They are the biggest nothing in the world compared to One. Solitary. Pure. Musical. Note.

A single breath from a musician is worth the life and death of a million writers.

I see now how much time I have wasted. Each stroke of my pen should have been carving notes into scales, rather than clever words into paragraphs. I find that when I had heaped both praise and prose upon my beloved Jennica, that each time within me was a small bit of discontent – nothing can truly illustrate her beauty that does not contain a truly perfect harmony. Indeed, my words have been about music so much recently, simply because music moves the soul to feel, rather than relate feeling.

Music is the mother of passion -- writing is a memoir of it.

Moreover, music is the language of gods and angels. In the clear, bright morning – one does not awake to birds softly twisting English or French or German together into a somewhat pleasing anecdote – no; rather they swing their sweet songs and make love to the earth. In the heat of passion, occasionally graces will fly from a lover’s mouth. “My heart burns like fire.”, “Your velvet skin is a perfect Heaven.”, “Eros envies us.” … but in that climactic moment, the moment of pure ecstasy, the conclusion of that frenzied waltz, -- it is music that births from between her parted lips. A moan, a chorus, a turn, a trill, a prayer to the sacred act of life and love that was just concluded. Not latin, not Aramaic, -- no; this prayer is spoken and screamed in the sacred tongue of music.

No matter if it’s mother is the lyre, the flute, oboe, viola, piano, human voice or chirping of animals. No matter if it be the orgasmic screams of a lover, the contrived effort of a composer, or the intrinsic music woven into all existence. Music is the language of God.


The following comments are for "On the Worthlesness of Writing"
by Schaard

Music vs. Writing
I disagree, and as of tonight I am ritualistically sacrificing my kazoo ;)


( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: July 7, 2005 )

The Poor Uncle
Your rant is very well written and you state the basis of your feeling in clear, concise language.

I especially liked the part about the morning birds.

Even though I've been steadily writing poems for over 45 years, I do agree with your basic premise. For instance, I've always considered poetry as "the poor Uncle" of the arts.

It's painfully obvious that the visual and aural arts have it over the written, even the spoken, word.

This is because music registers immediately and generally requires no effort from the listener. Visual art like painting, sculpture, dance, etc., also has it over the written word. All one has to do is look at it.

The written word requires an effort on the part of the reader and can be intimidating. Sadly, most people are scared off at the thought of reading a 600 page novel, and a poem on the page can seem strange and inaccessable to the vast, vast majority of people.

I think the key phrase here is, "instant gratification." Music and the visual arts provide this. Most often, the written word does not. It's just the way it is, especially in U.S. society, and is one reason there is so little economic value in writing that has literary value. And poetry is at the bottom of the heap.

Strangedaze: Do not forsake that kazoo! Myself and 3 other kazoo players get together on a regular basis and play the music of Bela Bartok's string quartets. Recently, one of our members had a coughing fit and his kazoo became lodged in his throat and our efforts at applying the Heimlich Maneuver were to no avail. So we are looking for a replacement.

( Posted by: gomarsoap [Member] On: July 8, 2005 )

Perhaps I will spare the kazoo for your sake, but just this once ;)


( Posted by: strangedaze [Member] On: July 8, 2005 )

The Distant Word
Ooooh my goodness Schaaaarddddd (!!!!).... it's sooo nice to read you, again. Now, may I commence with kicking your philosophical derrier? (just teasing, just teasing)

I find myself agreeing and disagreeing with you. I think the most profound power of language *is* it's distance, it's ability to give without giving, share without sharing.... language lives as a complex contusion of contradictions in that we are always nearer and farther from understading "truth" whenever we use it.

While I agree that music may convey sensations, feelings and realities beautifully, I'm not sure that music has a greater advantage over language in describing complex layers of contradiction or even metaphor, allusion, or combinations of ideas. I don't know that it would be possible to explore E=MC2 in music, or beyond that "Turn the other cheek" or "If God did not exist, it would be necessary to reinvent him" or "The ultimate downfall of violence is that it is always a descending spiral" or "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar". If you can find the purely musical equivalents of these quotes, please let me know, I'd be interested in hearing them.

I am, of course, a Taoist at heart (besides being a bit of a smartass, which, I guess is essentially the same thing minus a bit of cheek), so the idea that one thing would be "better" than another strikes me as flatly ridiculous. Is man better or worse than woman? Is dawn better than midnight? Is bird song better than a wolf howl? I suppose it depends entirely on who you are and what you're doing when you consider such questions.

The pleasant notion, of course, is that, if we're debating between words and sounds, well, you don't really have to make a choice for all time -- words and sounds are both tools which can be exchanged, back and forth, handily (unlike, say, primary sexual organs) depending on what you or your muse deems most suitable in the moment of creation.

Now, I myself have really horrific childhood memories of the kazoo, but I say, if you love a thing, hold on to it, dearly.

So please keep your blanged kazoo, Andyroo -- it is ever the essence of an epiphany to return to one's roots.

( Posted by: hazelfaern [Member] On: July 13, 2005 )

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