Chicagoetry: Saturday Afternoon
By J.J. Tindall
Music, if music, is divine,
the sub-atomic matter of divinity.
Not as a god but as a god might be.
He savored the complacencies
of a beer run, illumined by siren song,
the luminous trill of a woman's voice
in Spanish--not the tyrannous bleat
of emergency engines--sluicing through
ash-grey alleys like invisible water
through caverns of Indian-corn brick,
fluttering, flirting and luring,
lute en fleur.
A brook of invisible gems, supple
and turbulent, a careening of lush atoms.
Spanish is music-upon-music to the non-Spaniard
in the works. He encountered a church
festival in the parking lot of Iglesia del
Nazareno, a carnivale of faith and family,
pulsating with popular rhythm and blues.
Children darting and dancing, setting pigeon
flocks--flecked in ash--undulating, supple
and turbulent. Young couples embracing,
husbands and wives in intense conversations
of labor, pain and enduring love.
Visible, culpable: keyboards, trap-set
and bass guitar, with a chorus of three (a trinity).
Music invisible, but real as rain.
The Spanish did not batter his heart
with mythy rhetoric. Divinity pressed upon him
in lush, sub-atomic reality, whorling and whooshing,
like a jettisoned flock of scavenger birds.
Like swirling birds, not a seething, humanesque god.
The more human, the less humane. The less humane,
the less godly. Music, if music, is miracle,
luring lush hearts from deifying life's inherent pain,
not as a god but as a god might be.