The Deaf Listen to Their Poetry

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The poet signs his words to the deaf.

The screen behind exposes his faulty hands.

He is silent.

His hands a fire.

 

He knows there will be unintended words,

new meanings to old and familiar lines.

The muddle is his creation,

their new meaning, new poem,

both treachery and rebirth,

their dawn and twilight, their light and moon,

both hawk and silver fish gliding, swimming

high in the silent moonlight clouds and sky

of the noisy rewrite of their imagination.

 

He reads his words on their shirts.

Cloth sells better, than ten thousand books.

The swift river of lines comes in their colors too!

His restless words settle in for the show.

He feels like a naked stranger in an open door.

 

 

When his hands stop, the applause comes.

The deaf are enthusiastic clappers.

Something about getting off on the vibrations

created by their hands, he figures.

He’s happy when they come up to him,

signing new syllables

to be printed on upside down books.