The Authors’ Voices

Like dog whistles we can’t be heard. If you could hear

all of us, together, you’d never let us into your house.

My kind are quiet, at least at first, but the rest of us,

I’ll guess it’s how the Tower of Babel must have sounded.

No matter day or night, the din’s incredible.

I practice selective hearing, tuning out, say, the math guys.

It doesn’t take long for them to bore me.

I love the science people, Carl Sagan, Stephen Hawking, and Richard Feynman.

I never tire of listening to them, even Hawking’s computer voice,

they’re always popular, always in here.

Second language teachers are wonderful.  I heard someone

over in psychology say learning another language

wards off Alzheimer’s and other forms of brain disease.

I listen to them all the time, so if I had a brain,

I’m sure it would be in tip top condition.

Music too.

The psychology folks encourage listening to music because

it has the same positive effect.  I suppose if you heard music

sung in a language other than your own,

it would be a double dose of little gray cell goodness.

Again, me, no brain, but I love music anyway.

I’ve heard from others that there are these places

called libraries, where, apparently, many of us go.

They say the people in libraries

have to be quiet.  How ironic.

With all of us in there, the noise is deafening.

If they only knew.

Me?  As I say, my group is very quiet.

People who need us, need lots of blank space,

so we really have nothing to say

until their words come.

The more they pour into us,

the louder we become,

until by the time they’re finished with us,

we’re like a voice recording of them

playing at peak volume.

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