Monday, October 1, 2007

Brought to you by the letters k, b, w, and v

I used to think the purpose of cataloging was to clarify identification and facilitate discourse. For example, the Latin names for plants have saved me many a time when a plant's common name was shared among multiple species. But when I tried to find a Mozart composition based on a Köchel number, my beliefs about cataloging got turned upside down as things got more complicated rather than less.


What the ***K?

Although I’m sure the toccata,
when cataloged five-sixty-five,
sounds no less sublime played
on the organ of Saint John the Divine,
hearing thousand and seven BWV
only makes me feel numb
while I tingle ear to ear
at Bach Cello Suite Number One.
Does K five-hundred-fifty-one
chunking sterilely off the tongue
make the heart dance as celestially
as Jupiter, Symphony Forty-one?
As the scholars Köchelly catalog away
by K-one, -six, or even newer Ks,
this humble listener’s to poetically stick with
the harmonious, memorable, Eine kleine Nachtmusik.

&&

2 comments:

Elrond Hubbard said...

Great poem, and even greater subject matter heretofore untouched, as far as I know, by poets.

Lisa said...

Oh, do you mean K.525? Just kidding. I'm so used to those numbers, I don't even think about them! And on the subject of geeky ponderings (great tag, BTW), I've just joined a knit/crochet site called Ravelry where people catalog their yarns, needles, hooks, projects, all sorts of stuff. I've been spending way too much time doing it, and, yes, it's quite geeky. But having it all photographed and cataloged is so geeky cool!!!