This article originally appeared in Southern Exposure Vol. 6 No. 3, "Passing Glances." Find more from that issue here.

It never came,

The splendid sound

From pain

And grace

And agony.

The sounds of elegant

Strings reverberated:

In stiff collar,

In black coat,

He flowed forth a prelude

With deft tenderness of technique

But the possession of the

Thing never came to be.

It never came at all.

The echo in the velvet hall

Was heard and drew applause

But the thing itself

Never did appear. It never came.

A hollow echo

Of pain resounded,

A hollow echo

Of grace not grace —

Of agony devised.

And faces of the searchers,

Pallid under chandelier,

Were harsh with what

The sound had missed,

Angered that the thing itself

Eluded and evaded them.

They knew it as a breach of power —

The thing, so real, could not

Be mocked nor imitated,

A beauty not to be conjured.


— from East of Moonlight

Red Clay Books