The Body Makes Noise

The body wants to make noise.
Not just breath-hum, the chirps of joints
and bones, the steady bongo of blood:

the body wants to enter with a yawp
the room ringing with faces,
wants to shout-shatter the boudoir,
cleave the bed with its shudders,
drown the din of the dance-floor
in a racket of scat, shimmy and croon.

The soul likes to keep quiet,
pursed and cool, yet still alert
to the piccolo's filigree of trills,
the iron cuff of rap, a trumpet
and its broad brass curve of blare.

Gospelers belt out the body's elation
and donít Gregorians keen its cravings?
When the body quivers,
itches and jerks,
the soul whispers go on out
and whoop it up
then settles back to listen,
faces the music, listens
and waits
in a resonant, darkening room.

from Henry Gray (1825Ė1861).Anatomy of the Human Body.

Copyright 2012, Ken Turner

A summer resident of North Carolina, Ken Turner has been working abroad for nearly 20 years in Pakistan, Ivory Coast, Venezuela, and currently China. His poems have appeared in various publications, including Atlanta Review, Southern Poetry Review, Fine Madness, and several anthologies. Recent work can be found in The Literary Bohemian and The Summerset Review.

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