A Vocal Couch Once Told Me

by Eleanor Goldfield

A vocal coach once told me that singing is just like speaking

So let us speak of things

Of dog-eared books and notes in margins

Of graffiti at midnight

And challah at sunrise

Of sand in socks

Romantically irritating

Of shit on feet and mud in your hair

Let us speak

Of the unmentionables

Let’s sing it loud to melodies known deep in our bones

To rhythms that follow heartbeats

4/4 time

Let’s stomp so records skip

Let’s flail so mosh pits envy

Let’s light pagan fires from Jesus candles

Shout amen to the witches we come from

Let’s speak of jaunty philosophies

And arcane ideologies

Topple the rigid

Glide with the fluid

Let’s fuck and make love

Because we can do both

Let’s sing and speak

Let’s run and fall

Let’s choreograph spontaneity

Skip and try not to giggle

Let’s breathe

Smooth or hacky

Jagged or calm


And let us speak of things

Whatever hides between the lines

Of the dog-eared books and scribbled margins

Of selves kept on dusty shelves