The Spoken Word

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  • Open Mike

    The Spoken Word

    He had no real polish to speak of 

    To him

    Eloquence required more practice than it was worth

     

    “If the words don’t sing themselves off paper,”

    He would chide

    “They have no business being there in the first place”

    (Go figure)

     

    Yet

    Listening to him speak his stuff

    Felt like maple syrup and melted butter

    Sliding off a stack of hot pancakes

     

    You knew he didn’t want to be there

     

    If it weren’t for folks like me

    He’d have had no reason to show up

    Let alone read

     

    How our applause would plead for the Master to continue

     

    Reluctantly

    His sense of professorship relented

    To the sheer poverty of our need

     

    Truly

    Here was a performance poet in spite of himself

    And I

    Another privileged student

    Yet to graduate from his school of invisibility

     

    +

     

    For Paul

     

    +

     John Christopher 1993

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    Poetry is finer and more philosophical than history; for poetry expresses the universal, and history only the particular.

    Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) Greek philosopher.

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