Of the Terrible Angels and Their Fleshy Conduits

by Gary Hardaway

I write what I can remember of what comes to me unbidden. When I forget things and cannot pull them out onto paper or the screen it makes me sad and angry. Sometimes, if I re-examine later the fragments I did capture, the missing parts sound again and I can complete the transcription. Everything is a transcription from one tonal structure to another that ordinary ears can tolerate. I am a medium, little more, a scribe for terrible angels who find me a convenient intermediary. My ineptitude must try their patience. They can only whisper messages in dreams, waking and sleeping. Anything more direct destroys us in an instant.

Other pathways are more satisfactory. They are more closely attuned to music of the other world.  Even so, the heat eventually burns them up. They off themselves at an early age or dry up and parlay a small fame into comfort, the stage perhaps, or parody. The angels have to call upon lesser conduits; they have so much to convey and very little time for us to get it before we end ourselves pursuing the quotidian as if it were significant. That's why there are so many artists and short-lived venues despite the quotidian world's pervasive derision and co-option. The angels keep searching for those who can hear and are thus able to serve, however badly, as transcribers and fleshy conduits of divinity.

 Waste, sad waste, stretching before and after the singular moments the angels can push through this recalcitrant dirt.