The Poeming Pigeon: Poems about Music brings together 88 poems by 88 poets. The collection starts with a bang, as Michael T. Coolen tells us
the cosmic background radiation that was created
resonates throughout the universe
it is a D flat fifty-seven octaves below middle C
it is the source of all music
and it ends with a beauty, Kenneth Salzmann’s What But the Music, which asks
What but the music underscored every presumed
triumph and defeat, drew us into church basements
and into cheap apartments in bad neighborhoods,
ripped down walls, egged us on, played us out?
and my poem, Moonwalker falls somewhere in the middle (clue: it’s not about The Police although they’re pretty great).
There’s a pantoum and a sestina, poems that reference Bach, Puccini, Hendrix and Leonard Cohen, poems about country music and jazz music, poems about remembering music, playing it, dancing to it, and more. Another beauty is Deborah J. Meltvedt’s First Songs, about the music that plays while we’re in the womb, like
your mother’s voice sewing your bones.
It doesn’t matter what kind of music you like. I’ve never been a huge fan of Pete Seeger, but one of my favorites is Jane Yolen’s Singing with Pete, in which Yolen likens music to food:
You never left his concerts hungry, but carried those tunes
home in a tote sack, to snack on all the rest of your life.
Here are 88 reasons why we love music so much.