• By Andra Veness (she/her)
  • Art “Orgelwerke” by Nick Cook (he/him)
He takes the stage
in front of hundreds of onlookers
waiting to hear his lang-uage.
                                        As soon as his fingers touch down,
                                        a maw opens,
                                        and the conch sings to us.
                                                                               The waves of song swell and crash,
                                                                               stirring the white sand and black stones.
                                                                               The waves are
The song crescendos
around a cacophony of keys,
like birdsong, untraceable within the trees.
                                        Two swallows,
                                        swerving and ducking,
                                        dancing on one air.
                                                                               The shadows sway along,
                                                                               teasing the edge of the stagelight, unfocused
                                                                               but carefully orchestrated to the sound.
It's a step dance
rushing rushing
before the fall that—
                                        The tides tip and turn,
                                        dancing over one another,
                                        haunting the overturned hull
                                        before pulling back in a riptide.
                                                                                                         Long pause—