Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Listening the hum around oneself, excluding oneself.

The concept of writing, the manifestation of words written, only comes when I write. My mind does not have something to say before I say it. So, taking my headphones off, sat under a Veteran Oak tree, the wire of the contact microphone rising in the air like a charmed snake, I write. The wind is blowing in from the west, the coast, in shards, when listening through headphones the wash of noise almost scares me. From my vantage point, a hill overlooking the town, sound in part becomes more telling, in that my knowledge of the area is highlighted, but also becomes more blurred than usual, the volume of the wind separating and unifying myriad aspects of the towns entire auditory spectrum. Now I must change the position of the contact microphone, and find a new place to sit. I am no longer shaded by the canopy of the large Oak, I am shaded by my headphones, my view of the town is only partially blocked by a flight of Swallows, soon heading south. As the wind comes in i hear the creaking of the felled tree I am recording at the same time as I see the blades of grass blowing, as it, well, I do not know what to make of it, in any sense of the situation. I can not think, but it does make me feel, something.

Earlier, I had stayed in the same spot, recording the same small area of trees for over an hour, the microphone never moving far away form the part of the tree that had preceded it. Yet the difference, substantial. It makes me hear like there are many trees residing in the same spot, as if one tree were the home of thousands of trees. Looking down, I resist the temptation to swing on the tree branch, then I look up, the microphone had slipped, the putty dry from overuse. The squeaking and crackling of the branch resounding as shadow, not that I hear this as a negative. Now I have stuck it back firm to the bark of the limp branch, barely hanging onto its body, stroking the ground, becomes all the more intense. My eyes start to water, not through what I am hearing, but through the intensity of the wind.