radio tune

for Christmas mass this year,

we went to our local church

made of red brick and village gossip.

everything went as usual

to the point where leaving the club

still seemed to be the most sensible option.

not even the organ was playing along very merrily,

even though its date was female.

but then, all of the sudden, to the surprise of us all,

the old priest (is there any other kind?!)

took out his old radio player, hit play

and introduced the entire congregation to his favorite song.

the tune was probably from the 80s

and his singing training probably from the shower.

but, with every stanza that he firmly presented to us

in spite of Parkinson’s pains,

the situation slowly got turned around.

ostensibly, the man was touched by something

that didn’t per se touch anyone else in the pews,

but I was moved by his being moved

and that moment was real.

so — even if my Eve didn’t involve a baby born

in the midst of a revolution against a regime,

it involved inspiration growing from the dark.

and what could be more real

to a beginner in this life

than true vulnerability

shown by a representative from the most stoned artefact.

the moment was embarrassingly small at first,

later potently real

and certainly suitably embedded

in a neighbourhood of the only Americans

who came to attend the service

and sat down next to me.

the three of us

bonded over the fact that we all

are strangers in this place

but that inspiration, when it strolls by,

looks like this:

an old tune

sung out of the dusty radio

of a lonely man

to the sea of searching souls

in the middle of the night.