Friday, June 12, 2009


Sometimes it is the flame that goes out, looking for the moth.

Sometimes, writing the poem, I am terribly alone.

Sometimes I need to belong, need the companionship found in being part of a band, need the kind of conversation that music is. I need to play root and fifth to the guitar's flatted seventh.

What is to belong? "Long" is from a root meaning "to go along with." "Be" means "completely." When you play bass in a band, you lay foundation for the music. You go along completely, because the other instruments come with you; they are going, by devious path, where you are going. Even when you cut loose, especially then, you make a promise to always be there, in the right place at the right time: that is the bass-player's compact with his companions.

I have more trouble in my role writing lyrics for our songs. I think the words in some way represent who I am; if the words are changed, somehow I am changed. A fellow sets my words to music. Another fellow sings them. Like me, they believe the song represents who they are.

Sometimes they want changes, so lyrics and music belong more completely to one another. Do I go along? Not always. Yes, words and music must fit each other. Yet sometimes the words have made other promises; thus is poetry an inferior art. And thus, seeking to belong, sometimes I find myself strangely silent.

Only the music belongs completely to itself.

(This is the fourth post in an ongoing online game of Consequences. Each successive entry begins with the closing lines of its predecessor. Entries are 250 words long, and are linked thematically. The postings in the series to date can be found as follows:

Consequences #1 - No Man Is an Island: Hydragenic.
Consequences #2 - Entire of Itself:
Patteran Pages.
Consequences #3 - A Part of the Main:
Porous Borders.
Consequences #4 - To Belong:
The Middlewesterner.
Consequences #5 - Be-longing:
Feathers of Hope.
Consequences #6 - Expats, or: La Vie En Rosé:

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