Tonight the shadow of Mila’s strings impressed
Against the velvet insides of his open guitar case
Like a door ajar as if to say I’ve just arrived
But I’m ready to leave the lid wide receiving
That hundred dollar bill with a request for a song
Written in ink so bold at least that’s the idea
Somehow the singer’s ice breaking conversation
Always fresh like the repertoire Leonard Cohen’s
Hallelujah dropped into a sea of slack key medley
Falsetto for once misnamed because the high notes
Don’t lie most of us come here saying nothing
Keeping our melodies to ourselves hiding inside
The amplification so we let him carry the tune
We don’t even understand the words most of the time
What is this parallel world I keep asking myself
This place I find myself where people are just
Trying to get by he looks out and sees us
With our loss there on our sleeves our found
Here in our eyes if we disappeared he’d still
Keep playing what’s that saying just that
He’s brought it too this possibility this chance
That something between us will pick up
Another chord a vibration that’ll keep moving
Right on up the hill through the night
Into the dark under the starry sky
I turn into the place called home and wonder
Is the soul inside or out am I the impression
Left when the lid is closed tight pressed
Down against my strings right now
I’m feeling small my voice is so far
Inside I can hardly hear it so far
I’m beginning to wonder if I understand
What’s going on this coming together
This coming apart don’t tell me music
Is magical and the singer’s the messenger
This is the crazy thing this coming down
To earth half believing it’s not a dream
What’s it going to take to get ahold of
This connection business tonight it rained
And we got closer closed those distances
We call ourselves hey it was a taste
In the end we paid our bills mine yours
Left our respective tips there on the wet
Tables and then it cleared we look up
See planets we can name galaxies
We can’t the crazy thing this looking up
All those lines we didn’t understand
Hawaiian or English it doesn’t matter
Inside all language there’s another language
So let’s just say we took our cells to the gig
And the songs pressed themselves against our velvet minds



Hurricanes ride past
each casts a calm eye
from the center of its wildness
but we’ll never get used to it
complacency earns a different sort of look
I’ve given that look said nothing
seen so many alerts
not that I don’t care
not that I’m unaware
if anything prepared as ever I can be
one thing I’ve learned you can rush to the scene
but it doesn’t do any good
if anything the truth gets hung up waiting
you’re left musing on local architecture
smiling fantasizing how things are gonna go
I won’t say you’re on your own no matter what
but that’s close

tonight there’s a heavy bass
walking through the house
like a determined man
with no shadows and the lamps blazing
I can hardly understand the lyrics
a woman’s voice sings
it’s my life
and I’ll do what I like
the snare drum gives me a chill

I’ve never owned a horse and
I’m no white knight
I’m done rescuing damsels
I was never cut out for it
my place at the round table
was all a game in the garden of my childhood
chivalry just gets me in trouble
dragons are my friends
and anyway the princess
is always a princess
whose alerts keep coming across my screen
excuse me while I flick one more away
so I can keep an eye on the storm’s path

everybody sees an island
in the wide wide sea
but everybody is an island
fire and ice
some good days
and some make you look up and frown
complacency doesn’t sit well with me
but I know when there’s nothing more I can do
outside that radius of possibilities
out there beyond my reach

I might as well say a prayer
before I turn out the lights
turn into the cover of night
where the noise of the world
is supposed to fall away
maybe the windows will shudder
and the trees will break like an ocean shore
and the wind will play the house like an aeolian harp
we’re waiting here
our openings offer themselves up to the wind
it’s a long night
this letting go

everything’s on hold
the theme here is release
no one said it would be easy
so don’t mind me while I rage against that distant light
the one I left on
left burning on two continents
I’ll get over it I swear but forgive me
if these storms give me free rein
to charge right up to the disappearing moon
and when I set foot there
look down on this moment
the other side of time lapsing clouds
at the places where words failed me
and all songs sounded mixed up and familiar
you know the problem is
I can’t say what I mean
the storms come in
one after another
Hector Lane Miriam Norman
a flight of orphans
nobody’s children
all virgin births all come of age in a hurry
all we can do is nod to their could
would might at such a speed
at such an hour no wonder
I’m jealous of their uncluttered power