Sunday, August 19, 2012

Poem - "The Universe: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack"

by Salman Hameed

Eid Mubarak!

And for this Sunday, here is a poem by Tracy K. Smith from her spectacular poetry collection, Life on Mars (see an earlier Irtiqa post about her book: The Poetry of Cosmology and Grief). In fact, this book won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry this year.


The Universe: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
by Tracy K. Smith

The first track still almost swings. High hat and snare, even
A few bars of sax the stratosphere will singe-out soon enough.

Synthesized strings. Then something like cellophane
Breaking in as if snagged to a shoe. Crinkle and drag. White noise,

Black noise. What must be voices bob up, then drop, like metal shavings
In molasses. So much for us. So much for the flags we bored

Into planets dry as chalk, for the tin cans we filled with fire
And rode like cowboys into all we tried to tame. Listen:

The dark we've only ever imagined now audible, thrumming,
Marbled with static like gristly meat. A chorus of engines churns.

Silence taunts: a dare. Everything that disappears
Disappears as if returning somewhere.


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