An Overture for Adam in Strings and Sax / Bob Ambrose


                       Quantum strings will always sing 
                       assigned frequencies, set pieces 
                       undergirding all we are below 
                       the threshold of ever knowing 
                       with songs that constrain matter 
                       to the dance of chance and brute 
                       necessity, inert bodies compelled 
                       by contingency, brains of beasts 
                       bullied by what came before, no 
                       foretaste of freedom here where 
                       what is not forbidden, that very 
                       thing required, enforced in times 
                       before the turning, when God’s 
                       honey-voiced servant graced the 
                       Garden and woke new worlds of 
                       choice and shame. 

Ah, that siren-serpent 
blows jazz notes, riffs 
below the threshold of thinking 
where blood rises unbidden 
and neural circuits 
form and bind 
strange loops map symbols as Adam sings names 
the beasts of field 
and birds of air 
captured 
in the holy dance 
of fire and abstraction 
by the shade of the forbidden tree that towers mid-garden 
stepping lightly 
to syncopated serpent-rhythm 
looping, loosening, catching 
incipient mind finds the symbol for mind 
regards itself 
staring back, sucked 
into consciousness, shatters 
the looking glass, falls through the face of infinity 
gone the garden, forever 
emerging to indeterminacy 
with pounding temple and tart aftertaste of awareness 
ashamed 
at last 

Celestial strings sing peaceful themes to a strident world of
     autonomous souls 
locked in the logic of survival, doubled down in Prisoner’s Dilemma
     until sweet 
chords call forth our latent angel-nature, carved below the folds
     and through 
the grooves of growing minds, molded by God and game theory over
     eons of anguish 
to defy the dictates of Darwin at last, alleluia, and bend the steel
     arc of history 
by slow degrees toward the peaceable kingdom which exists, surely,
     somewhere 
incarnated from abstraction in the everyday lives of kindly sinners and sweat- 
     stained 
saints who swing to strings and sax, freed from necessity to fall,
     or rise.

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