Losses in Translation

by Gary Hardaway

The brain will force the rest of the body
to feel something that doesn't technically exist
but is only imagined as its eyes read the painting

or look at the story reduced to its black and white
field of symbols. Sometimes the story is music
and sometimes equations and possibly

an ancient style of photograph. The brain
must train itself to touch the symbols
and feel them in cognitive leaps of faith.

All arts are difficult until the brain agrees
on certain sets of possibilities the symbols
represent. Art and the sciences are all

very difficult without the stones of equivalence
and immersion in the fields on display. One
can't always trust the eye and ear

in such matters but what can one do?
Mistakes will be made. We hope
nothing more serious than mistaking

sharps for flats or 4 apples for 9
in the not quite legible dead man's hand
on the penultimate page of his journal.