Between Here and the Next Stage (A Festival)

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Empty fields to swelling crowds

blue skies to encroaching clouds

delicate sitar strings

to feedback so loud

the eardrum rings and reverberates

into the next repetitious beat.

Somehow it is tribal.

Something to rival

the isolation of the day to day,

when habits shake away in our flimsy boxes.

Finally able to shed its skin,

to levitate from within,

audience to exploration.

This profound surrender

to spontaneous movements,

surfing into the sound,

a swirl of the imagination

lifts us from the ground.

It completes the journey

without gravity,

from tension to release,

individual oppression

to collective expression.

 

We converge from all corners of the earth.

England, Iceland, Japan,

Dancer, spectator, musician.

A photographer captures our composition,

our cathartic expressions.

Along the periphery,

see her and then she is gone,

leaving only the mystery of a fleeting purpose.

A wish to ask her, if only to liberate curiosity,

if she’s no longer the same as when she came in.

Moth to butterfly, like a shifting sky

bleeding dark to call out the moon,

glowing yellow from the trees of its elevation,

reflecting in the river amphitheater.

Suddenly the night is like leather

and dark packs prowl through the weather.

You can hear their bikes and classic cars

racing towards some dead man’s curve,

they throttle into oblivion.

Mirror images become distorted

with kaleidoscopic color tableaus,

of time travel and transformation,

suddenly it is the 1960’s,

a helicopter hovers

and Vietnam imagery

uncovers the killing fields

from out of the smoke

of sonic explosions.

Music awash with reverb,

dripping with jewels,

like the moon now merging

with the creek top,

everything moving

upon an inkblot ceiling,

absorbed into the next set,

so strange and inflamed,

the fire burns through time and space,

blurring the lines

between here and the next stage.

Improvised euphoria and elation,

transformation rather than

the simple weathering of elements

in the weariness of limbs,

a remedy

on the end of a discordant melody.

 

It’s lifting.

Veils of smoke and time

falling away from the fingers

of these revered figures.

Musicians who play through

three days of psychedelic haze.

The drone of their instruments,

like planes overhead,

lights collapsing on the fields unfolding,

once nondescript

now composing

a disorienting canvass of interloping,

all manner of merging

on an indigo meadow

of blurred reference points.

It is a skewed Coachella,

like her wierd brother,

with a great record collection,

far flung and growing like a thorn

out of the hill country of central Texas.

Rain and stage light

wets the technicolor appetite.

Everything designed to alter and transform

before our dilated eyes,

translucent feathers,

tranquil waters

swell to worship

those alters of music,

those altered perceptions

of the majestic moment

reflected in each,

a glimpse of awe. 

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7 thoughts on “Between Here and the Next Stage (A Festival)

  1. Chatty Owl says:

    Powerful influence music and crowds and overall mood has on people..

  2. Millie Ho says:

    I love this poem, especially the line “blurred reference points”! Sums up all the festivals I’ve been to. 🙂

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