I remember that first rehearsal, but it's an odd memory. I can see the stage, the hardwood boards I must have climbed up from the orchestra leveel, vaulted over the footlights, found my chair in the jumble of woodwinds, castoff clarinet reeds already littering the floor and that floor it was as old and the finish had been scraped off by feet and risers. It was dusty and gray and the bright afternoon light which came in through enormous Venetian blinds hanging from the tall ranked windows washed itself in dust. Dust settled and dust rose, and the light above the old boards enjoyed the muddle.
-- from "A Woman's Name," in Swan of Tuonela
It is going to be a long summer. June in South Philadelphia is already uncomfortably hot. Even the noise of the trucks around the warehouses is hot. The boards closing the doors and windows of the organ factory next to James and Anna's alley are hot. The nails that hold them in place. The weeds growing in lots where old buildings have been razed are taking heart. The ailanthus trees gather themselves to spring. James has been reading Hermann Hesse Stephenwolff and Magister Ludi
-- from "Free Lessons" in Swan of Tuonela
"I was born in 1836 with a veil over my face, a fact to which some might attribute the story I am about to tell. I write not to gain eccentric notoriety, but do so out of a good and honest heart, through the influence of some mysterious power. The candid reader may accredit all that is herein written, for they are veritable facts."
-- from Falling Stones: the Spirit Autobiography of S.M. Jones
"My mind wanders dangerously when I play the flute. My thoughts float, dart, appear and disappear in mysterious comet-like ellipses. I hardly own them. When I was a child, I would construct elaborate fantasies as I practiced, and wake from them with no recollection of the scales I had played. I would imagine famous musicians standing outside my window, listening as I practiced, deeply moved by the music I had discovered among the tiny spiders clinging to the corners of my room; and if I had been foolish enough to have the radio on while I learned the notes of some difficult piece, I would have the precise, play-by-play recall of a ball game every time I played that particular passage."
-- from Listening to Mozart
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Praise for MYOMANCY
MYOMANCY, is insightful, witty, surprising and wise. We are lucky to have Charles Wyatt, and his clever poetry. ~Leah Maines, author of Beyond the River
Charles Wyatt is the author of two collections of short stories and a novella: Listening to Mozart, University of Iowa Press 1995, Falling Stones: the Spirit Autobiography of S.M. Jones, Texas Review Press 2002, and Swan of Tuonela, Hanging Loose Press, 2006. His poetry chapbook, A Girl Sleeping, won the 2006 Sowâs Ear Poetry Review contest and was published in June 07. He served as principal flutist of the Nashville Symphony for more than 25 years. Presently he teaches creative writing and literature at Denison University.