by Quentin Crisp

I will make endless music—syncopated,
shrill, sad music—out of English speech.
Your ears, to calumny habituated,
more euphonic phrasing might not reach.

I will make endless music till the lonely
limits of our torment have been told
that all may hear and some not only
hearken but be heartened and consoled.

I will make endless music. Say not
that the world’s ears are waxed or numb,
because I will not, dare not, may not,
see you suffer, and be dumb.

Copyright © 1999–2006 by Quentin Crisp and Phillip Ward, from Dusty Answers (forthcoming). All rights reserved.
"Bird" line drawing by Quentin Crisp, from Colour in Display (1938), copyright © by Quentin Crisp. All rights reserved.

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