VISIT TO THE AUDIOLOGY CLINIC, 1973

He said one day you will be totally deaf

and before I left said Thank you to the Doctor

even though his gift was a sentence

to be carried out at some unspecified date.

While I was able I had to go to Montreux

to hear at least Miles Davis, Gary Burton,

BB King, Charles Mingus, Ornette Coleman,

Keith Jarrett, Sun Ra and Horace Silver.

And I had to hear everything in the world -

kids in the playground, raindrops tap-dancing

on a tin roof, the wind blowing through trees,

leaves as they hit the ground, a crackling fire,

waves crashing on a beach, buses changing

gear, poetry (but I didn't know it back then),

opening a can of soup, breath (mine especially),

kittens chattering, bursting bubble wrap, thunder,

Tony Blackburn on the radio (it's OK,

I'm kidding), the song of blackbirds, the song

that comes from my lips, conversation that soars,

climbs, dives, races and sometimes just hovers

and, lastly, those simple words “I love you”,

richer than an abacus, alphabets or angels.

I'll miss everything that's grown familiar

and be locked in a anechoic chamber

where no sounds can arrive or escape.


 

◄ MARY STYLES'S PERFORMANCE POEM

THE BIRD ►

Comments

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M.C. Newberry

Sat 9th Mar 2013 14:33

I think many of us must have mulled over which- sight or hearing - we'd choose to do without if it ever came to that state of affairs. I think of total hearing loss as akin to a form of suffocation, too awful to contemplate. I am comforted by the amazing advances being made in returning hearing to the deaf - whilst being truly amazed that there is actually resistance from the deaf community for reasons that somehow relate to how they are perceived by the rest of us. Strange indeed. I recall being told decades ago that my sight was likely to deteriorate but so far so good - except for a need for specs. for "sharpening" up short distances as the years march on. We are so fortunate to live in an age when medical "miracles" arrive with increasing frequency.

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Chris Co

Sun 3rd Mar 2013 16:38

Beautifully written - a capturing of life rather than an acceptance of fate.

Best

Chris

me

Sun 3rd Mar 2013 14:43

Me too

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Isobel

Sun 3rd Mar 2013 10:06

What a moving poem. Like Cathy says, it makes you think about the senses you take for granted.

You've taught me a new word - I'd never heard of an anechoic chamber before and I loved the range and variety of sounds you inluded also.

The only thing I would possibly change is the last line, where the meaning is already implicit. I think you could express the horror of that in a different way.

Being nosey now - did it ever come to pass, or has medical advance circumvented deafness? I'd like to think it had.

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Yvonne Brunton

Sat 2nd Mar 2013 23:10

I like your bucket list We often fail to treasure that which we take for granted. The desolation of the last 2 lines is very effective. XX

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Cathy

Sat 2nd Mar 2013 16:34

Fantastic. I will listen to everything today.

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