Upon Hearing Montse The Singer
Poem by Arturo Desimone after hearing Montse Ruano sing the verse of Idea Vilariño, at a concert in Buenos Aires.
MONTSE THE SINGER
alas-lachrimae of eye made the plight
for mourners as a paid profession.
the mass deportations and expulsions at least do not affect me,
Today I was lucky, this night—
I did not know all along I would be praying
To be brought to the place
to see a mourner,
she is tall as an oasis palm
a singer from the North of Spain come down, down
no other substance of verbiage
no other mel et lac sub lingua sua
Amor amor amor
until I was crying.
in mass expulsions like spring of Hibiscus syriacus
from her gray eyes
hit a gourd, it broke its skein
and tears crept
and tears slid
preventing me from turning the other cheek
and how shameful,
it is not hydro-acid, or ash turning to its ashen self
like ashen Narcissus, forever twisting to himself (as accountant echoes
Tears are all we were made of,
the tears of sex, lachrimae sostenuto in time
until death, the arid visitor who drinks rivers and sewers,
then wipes his thick lips with the kerchiefs that Fates wove
at no small price.
My tears are the size of boxing gloves,
With a will of their own and wearing scarves
with eye-holes in them, they have murdered, plundered,
robbed ATM cash-machines, and have hidden in mangrove swamps
or crept along brick walls of Rancho and Calle Constitución.
The tears of wolves imitate
their makers, *(not the canines and bears dotted in stars stellar Hypatian)
in the mating, the tears mate as the wolves who shed them,
male upon the female, cimmarron upon the blue.
And two apes in mockery, by accident learned how to cry
as they imitated the fledglings, under their tree
there, before the blood-on-snow-on-a-stone age, 276,543 years ago, the Bonobo’s ancestors learned distinction, became taller so they could bow.
They learned the art of weeping
(at more than a fall, or a christ-thirst or a herod fit)
In dehydration, they stood up erect looked around for water,
their long shadows like lachrimae led
towards founding Civilization in arid planes.
Thousands and thousands of years
before poet-odes, sung tonight by Montse, the Morna singer —
Thirsty crawling men in sands
with curlers in their Babylonian beards
made the plight for civilization,
they knew Just what that entails:
Mourners as a paid profession.
Buenos Aires, 2016