The glass is humming

The idea of the musical glass came from the Crow whose poem you can read here. This is an attempt to tease out the idea in a different way.


The glass is humming in my head,

thrummed by a moistened finger,

idly following the tune,

the hand that pointed from the cloud.


Crystal fills with starlight, moonlight,

gathers silver chords glissando,

building music of the spheres.


The hand with moving finger falters,

having lost its song moves on

to write its orders in the wind.


Wind and water rise and turn

about the pristine crystal rim,

while the greybeard stops his ears.


The glass still hums its monologue,

for who can stop the wind, the tides?

No finger pointing from the clouds

can silence music of the stars

and tell the music of the moon: be not.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

20 thoughts on “The glass is humming”

  1. But beware, when the musical glass was mechanised as the Glass Harmonica, in the eighteenth century, the strange music it created was said to send young ladies mad!

      1. Thanks for that, Merril. You might have known Ben Franklin was behind it ๐Ÿ™‚ Not sure about the lead poisoning theory though. Surely you’d ingest more of it by actually drinking from the glass, so everybody would have been barking mad at that rate.

      2. Lead was a very common metal then, but lead in glasses is fixed and cannot affect a person touching or drinking the glass. The most dangerous utensils were made of pewter, a lead alloy, particularly plates. the metal is soft and if you look at an old pewter plate you can see grooves in the metal where a knife has scraped a little bit of the metal into the food.
        Worst of all were some foodstuffs, it was found that lead salts acted as artificial sweeteners and they were deliberately added where sugar would be unsuitable (in drinks for example where sugar could cause the liquid to ferment).

      3. It’s astonishing we’re still around really. Certainly a reason population growth didn’t really accelerate until the industrial revolution with its spinoffs into science and medecine, and (cynically) a greater incentive for keeping the necessary work force alive.

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