The Evidence Bass (Mary Moore)

The evidence bass plays the forbidden-
word blues, the proof-you-can-deny-
but-can’t-shut-up blues,
the notes the science bass

with the sun singing the fire
rippling through it;
the trees root-riffing
to other trees here’s bugs;
the vulnerable inside-in fetus
who can hear mother music
and father song;
the transgendered carnival
of being both/and;

the plant world,
the animal world, the all-we-are
world entitled to the diver-cities
of difference where everything thrives
in as many lives as
souls are innumerable as the blades
of old-poet-man Whitman’s grave
grass, as the notes
in the music of the spheres
harmonium of the cosmos
harmony of diversity
bass, soprano, alto


Mary Moore has won awards in 2016 and ’17:  her 2016 books are Flicker and Eating the Light, which won Dogfish Head and Sable Books awards respectively, and Amanda and the Man Soul won EMRYS’s 2017 award.  New work appears in Nimrod (Pablo Neruda Prize, 2nd place), Georgia ReviewPoem/Memoir/Story, Drunken Boat, Birmingham Poetry Review, among others.

Inspiration: I was inspired to write “The Evidence Bass” by the absurdity of the Trump administration banning words that involve language’s ability to speak truth to power. My conversion of “base” to “bass,” reflecting recent play with double meanings in my work, led me to the music of recent and ancient science, creating what I hope is a music of subversion.




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