(1947 / Miami, Florida.)

As If It Were "This Is Our Music"

— "mu" one hundred eighteenth part —


Heaved our bags and headed out again. Again
the ground that was to've been there wasn't.
Bits of ripcord crowded the box my head had
be-
come, the sense we were a band was back,
the sense we were a band or in a band...    The
rotating gate time turned out to be creaked,
we
pulled away. Lord Invader's Reform School
Band it was we were in, the Pseudo-Dionysian
Fife Corps, the Muvian Wind Xtet...    The sense
we were a band or were in a band had come
back,
names' wicked sense we called timbre, num-
bers' crooked sense our bequest. Clasp it tee-
tered near to, abstraction, band was what to
be
there was...    Band was what it was to be there
we shouted, band all we thought it would
be. Band was a chant, that we chanted, what
we
chanted, chant said it all would be alright...    
A new band, our new name was the Abandoned
Ones, no surprise. We dwelt in the well-being
that
awaited us, never not sure we'd get there, what
way we were yet to know. I stood pat, a rickety
sixty-six, tapped out a scarecrow jig in waltz
time, big toe blunt inside my shoe...    Who was I to
so
rhapsodize I chided myself, who to so mark my-
self, chill teeth suddenly forming reforming,
who to let my heart out so...    To be at odds with
my-
self resounded, sound's own City the wall I hit
my head against, polis was to be and to be so hit...
We heard clamor, clash, blue consonance, noise's
low
sibling
sense


We pumped our arms as though they were
pistons, elbows in and out. We nicked our
name to Abandon. Abandon was our name
now...
Thus was our music no music. Music too
we left behind. Everything beside the point
that there was no point, everything thus the
point... Thus was being there sibling sense
gone
treble, the balm to be a band the true amen-
ity music was, the fact of having been there
new
to its Buddha-nature, the fact of having been
there
moot





To have been there wasn't dasein. No Hei-
degger told my horse. Trussed up to
the side it sat, pressed and preponderant,
sov-
ereign, self-contained, were it music the
music we sloughed... Slipped accompa-
niment, surrogate cloud, rapt adjournment.
Agitant. Surrogate cue... I kept clear of it,
caught
up at arm's length, all but caught out I came
to see... Thus was our music no music it seemed
I said, mujic more than music I might've said,
might
as well have said, no matter I mumbled other-
wise under my breath... The Freedmen's Debate
Society our name now was, the Ox Tongue
Speaker Exchange. Fractal scratch. Nominative
ser-
ration. Cutaway run, cutaway arrest... Thus was
our music no music I did say, say's default on
sing such as it was... We called it history even
so,
insisted it, the it crowding the corner of eve-
ryone's eye. None of us were not crept up on,
none not required we sing it, say it. Thus was
our
say not
so


Beginning again for the muleteenth time,
we counted off. It was our muleteenth
breakdown, muleteenth new beginning...
Brass
rubbed off on our lips, reed rubbed off as
well, string steel left on our fingertips, stick
wood
left on our
thumbs

by Nathaniel Mackey

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