Note:- The curiosity of getting together for social ceremonies comes from the ill-fittingness of cliques and circles, brought together around a person (or in this case persons). Fascinating is the way in which people weave toward a shared meaning and understanding, whilst rarely renouncing the old fallbacks of routine and ‘good form’. Mind your ‘p’s’ and ‘q’s’ and keep yourself well-watered at the bottomless Uisge Beatha well (isn’t it a wodka bath?). Mark out the points of ceremony and offer up your thanks and congratulations, when they are asked for, of course. How to navigate a collision of protocols though? Which way to dance when there are two physical interpretations of the music? One woman, in particular, becomes profitable currency in such a setting. That is the woman who speaks convincingly in tongues. She is sought everywhere. Sometimes it’s good to embrace chaos and conflict – and accept, if there is a God, then it’s name is most likely carnage.
They seek her here,
They seek her there.
A slantwise approach in crackling tulle,
As someone in a Hobbs’s –
Invitation Maisy –
Forgets the incoherence of languages
And thus requires her linguistic Eucharist.
Speaking over one another:
“No,no, after you.”
“I’m sorry, what?”
Mother to mother,
Settling on the musclework of smiles.
Not knowing someone
Yet translating each word.
A benign Anglophone courtesy,
The politeness of listening, only,
Before thundering in, again.
To move toward a Slavic sentiment
Of saying what you mean –
An avoidance of tangents and subterfuge
And the pricking needle of innuendo.
“What is she saying?”, (a-swig of daiquiri),
“Miło cie poznać.”, (fluting pink champagne).
Those fields before the factories
Already arranged into greens and fairways,
A much easier transfiguration – of mind.
The Best Man is speechifying
At a speechless wedding.
An exchange of ceremonies
Lost before translation, “Gdzie?”.
Far better the cultural alchemy of dancing
and drunkenness. Has Samson had a haircut?
Are those not verbal walls being tongued down?