The audio segment in this post was recorded live on Thursday, July 22, 2010 at Centennial Hall (Burlington Central Public Library). The segment contains the Gurdjieff / De Hartmann piece entitled Kurd Shepherd’s Melody set against a reading of the poem Buoyancy by Jalaluddin Rumi and adapted from the Coleman Barks version.
Love has taken away my practices
and filled me with poetry.
I tried to keep quietly repeating
No strength but yours…
but I couldn’t.
I had to laugh and sing.
I used to be respectable, chaste and stable,
but who can stand in this strong wind
and remember all of those things?
A mountain keeps its echo deep inside itself.
That’s how I hold your voice.
Like a scrap a wood thrown into your fire quickly reduced to smoke.
I saw you and became empty.
This emptiness more beautiful than existence.
It obliterates existence, and yet when it comes
existence thrives and creates more existence.
The sky is blue.
The world is a blind man squatting on the road.
But whoever sees your emptiness
sees beyond blue and beyond the blind man.
A great soul hides while moving through the city
where no one knows.
To praise is to praise
how one surrenders
to the emptiness.
To praise the sun is to praise your own eyes.
Praise, the ocean. What we say, a little ship.
So the sea-journey goes on, and who knows where?
Just to be held by the ocean is the best luck
we could have. It’s a total waking up.
Why should we grieve that we’ve been sleeping?
It doesn’t matter how long we’ve been unconscious.
We’re groggy, but the guilt go.
Feel the motions of tenderness
around you, the buoyancy … the buoyancy.
Piano: Eunji Kim
Flute: Jamie Thompson
Voice: Gregory Dominato