Friday, March 11, 2011

Sermon, Accompanied by Woodwinds

I know why all the bones are hollow.
Pick up any vertebrae or rib,
Any os or fossil. Don't matter whose -
Bird, ox, lizard or saint -
You can peek through them all,
Use one as a spyglass on the world,
Or make a whistle or a flute.
Maybe that's why the Good Book says,
'And God breathed into man a soul...'
Breathed into him!
Blew his moist breath right down those tubes,
Played a tune upon those pipes,
Then left it there.
Where else would it fit?
Not in that cramped skull
With all that gray mass,
That's for sure.

Of course, we talk as if
We got a monopoly on soul.
But just think about those bones -
Bird, ox, lizard or saint -
Any of them can carry a tune.

written April 1977, published on Poem hunter April 2009


  1. I love this poem so much!!!And the title is simply brilliant.

  2. Yes and in most cases they sing their songs much more beautifully than we.