6.07.2016

The Song of the Pipes


it is addressed thusly:

A song.
it reads:
The pipe-player plays his song
Merrily, as though a dream
Were this life, the short and the long
All down-going its glinting stream
We are sad, for reasons unknown
And the music it does not groan
And we know, though it may seem
That we walk in silence, alone;

I once made a pipe to sound
Every color of a concert-hall
When in it are merrily found
The musicians' company, all
On as it were, the skylark's wing
The organ - how it does sing
But the joy, the art is to call
That it is not a viol's string;

What pipe, more bright than this
Makes sounds like a human voice
It inflects as oft as it lisps
It was one of our favorite toys
A joke! A serious joke--
A laugh as much as a choke
They were fooled by one of the boys--
That they thought a man had spoke!

But so it was long before
A pretense of speech and will
The mob that bangs at your door
Are an organ of suchlike skill
It bears a torch as it walks
And words are such as it talks
It is deadly! With death it may kill
That poor soul it seemingly stalks;

Now let me tell you a tale
Of an organ of light and shade
To mimic us, it cannot fail
In this it was perfectly made
They will see it is seemingly strong
And to rule it is fit everlong;
And to know, it is always forbade
That the pipe-player plays his song.
a postscript is here written:
This is an amalgamation of several texts. The most notable is Thomas Carlyle's relation of the democratic masses as being a simulacrum of a single human voice, as though they were a great pipe that a wind happened to be passing through that made them sound like they were speaking, and if speaking, made it seem like they were thinking and together had a mind and a will.

The 'organ of light and shade' - which consists, like most of these pipe-instruments (the mob certainly loves pipe-bombs) of a series of tubes. Sometimes there is light in the tubes, and sometimes, there is shadow. And what has begun as a joke - an a-musement, of copying certain human activities, like in the case of the mob, becomes a serious instrument. We would be led to believe that the 'viol' stop on the organ is actually a string section.

And we are, as we were about the mob, required not to consider the man working the keyboard. (We may hope he is well tempered.)

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