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the quiet parts
by Ashley Ording

wednesday is here and i am still digging through
my coat pockets for
the words i scrawled on a paper towel,
the letters that spelled Change and Beginning.
i suppose that
is where all of us are hovering.

but my fingers
can't reach in that far. i've been letting them
 over the tops of freshly lined paper
 with the blue ink still burning
but i cannot penetrate my own audience.

         sometimes i feel lost
      in the language of mass cultures
      and in the surrounding heart beat of
      people i've never met.
i only want to touch something
inside your chest or on the small of the back,
and carve there
 some kind of legitimacy.
i want you to pretend that
the small things matter when i enlarge them like this.

i still don't have the words to
describe being infinite, or the discipline
to pick out individual instruments
from a song. from the very first note
they crash together like bodies dancing
  to form a single period
   at the end of a life-long sentence.
the songs are all the same
with a beginning and an end,
except for the hushed secrets
            that live in the quiet parts.

            the silence between falling down
               and getting back up again.

Ashley Ording's web site is She can be reached at