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MUTE: “Hearing Your Voice for the First Time”

A poem by Raymond Luczak, from the book MUTE.

“In this clip, I recall what it was like to use my hearing aids when calling a prospective date for the first time. This happened back in the late 1980s, way before the Internet thing came along. The talented songwriter Seth Pennington performs his song “Want” as a guitar instrumental.” — Raymond Luczak


Text transcript for Blind/DeafBlind users:

[Note: This poem is formatted differently in the print version.]


When you called, I listened,
the line between us
taut, about to snap.
We were silent, our long distance
time ticking away.

I strained to understand
your utter- ances
with my hearing aids.

Who knew a voice
thick with want could sound so


You laughed nervously
at my weak one- liners.
My mind was stripped.

That night I dreamed
of you speaking

the timbre of your voice
sun-lit in my hands.


Poetry: “The Village”

By Eddie Swayze

Rainbow electric lights

Glowed like sugar crystals

Through the windows – dazzling!

Electric guitar-shaped men

Strolled majestically on the New York’s golden streets – beautiful!