People Noises

Can you hear him?
Can you hear him?

I hear them imitate the dogs

And they just make this sound

Like a Mohican warrior,

Or someone learning their vowels

For the first time and are

Astonished at what magic

Can come from their throat.

I hear them saying yes and no

Without saying yes and no,

A viper’s breath without the venom,

Lips that are numb to movement

Concealing a tongue that,

When called upon,

Fattens and flattens like a tire

That can’t decide its state of repair.

I hear them walking in and out

Of the doors that shut but don’t seal,

Creaks aren’t quite what are produced

Underfoot in this wooden house,

But something more akin to

A ripple across under the surface

Of a lake only divers can hear.

I hear them making busy sounds

When they are taking care

Of what they feel they must do

To survive in increasingly harsh

Environments that engulf

Their tiny home that holds

Much more than I can hear.

Composed 07/21/2012

Author’s Note: Nothing is more frustrating, curious, maddening, bewildering, or bewitching as listening to a language so far removed from the languages you grew up hearing. Especially when you have no clue what they are saying after trying to hard to understand.

Previous Posts

Traditional Mongolian Diet (Prose)

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