Disposable Poem August 8, 2015: Homage to Partch – After Harry Partch

 parch train 2

Homage to Partch

When you’re too poor
to buy a horn, machete the tubing
on the water hose and blow,
as my brother did. Why
should the rich monopolize
music? Those of us who grew up
where dodging bullets taught
a new form of modern dance,
professional drum sets were
out of the question. We’d build
new instruments from garbage,
especially percussion, and swarm
into the city, a marching band
bludgeoning mallets againstharry partch play 1
the oppressive Germanic orderliness
of a police state already in place
by 1947. “Madmen” do you call us?
Very well. Then madmen we shall be,
raucous and loud, atonal as the Asian-Harry_Partch_&_Gourd_Tree play
immigrants who built railroads,
African as the slaves bleeding
from picking cotton, Mexican
as a marimba among the orange
groves, a mix of nations
holding America accountable
for its “ritual of dream and  parch play inst03
delusion,” in a opera not for
monarchs and merchants, but
for hobos riding the rails, for
homeless hovels beneath
city bridges, for women
hiding battered in shelters
and for male hustlers packing
for a meal, so we may all rise
together, in Dionysian frenzy,
and take back what was ours.
[Disposable Poem August 8, 2015]
Dr. Mike

Partch’s magnum opus “Delusion of the Fury”.


Corporeal Meadows – The Online Home of Harry Partch

HOBO SAPIENS: The Life & Chimes of Harry Partch by D.J. Carlile

See and hear Harry Partch’s instruments at American Mavericks.

Parch your thirst with this Harry Playlist!

Sit in on a set with this Harry Partch lecture given at the University of Hawaii.

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