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Doug Wrenn

The Dark Eyed Musician
By Doug Wrenn
Jul 4, 2012 - 12:15:46 AM

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I am the dark eyed musician, with eyes revealing a dead soul.

No one can reach me.

I am too far lost in my hole.

My eyes are sunken deep, and empty, bereft of all expression, and almost down to my nose, as if creating a caricature of me.

Only numbness now clothes my pain.

Just how far, deep, and burning, no one else knows. And no one else sees.

The miles I travel are as long as the days. How many have passed? I do not know. They are all too far back in the now residual haze. I'll be playing in your hometown tonight, and in someone else's tomorrow. I am in constant movement, much unlike my embedded sorrow.

My music is my Utopian cloud; on it I blissfully drift lightly away.

Lost in my horn and percussion, but the respite only fleeting, and only while I play.

On breaks the crowd swoons, among my colleagues, the exuberant gaggle closes in.

You don't notice as I stealthily slip away, as mysteriously as the deceptive air, so prevalent, yet thin.

Back up on the stage, my corner is the dark one, cast out from the light. Yet you are enveloped by my seducing bombastic rhythm, and it's beat you adopt, increasingly like an addiction throughout the night.

My soul is dead but music makes my body come alive.

The whispering light barely caressing my silhouette in that dim, obscure corner, is enough to ignite my notes, and to make them shout out, and thrive.

If only you knew what I have seen and what has plunged me into my own personal abyss. All life and joy robbed from me. Now so far gone, I have even forgotten how to miss.

I am the spoke in this gig's wheel, that helps it so turn. Yet my fellow musicians speak to me infrequently and from behind shielded hearts, stiff and distant. Their speech noticeably just polite verbiage, devoid of query or intentions, and failing to yearn.

I am affable but quiet. My instruments vocalize what I truly need to say.

Come closing time, protective cases silence them, and thus then me, too. My life is silent darkness anyway, even during the brightness of day.

When the curtain falls at the show's end, it's last call at the bar, when everyone most craves a friend.

So I saddle up upon a stool. Conversation is light and brief; not at all too deep. More pain-numbing from the full, cool glass, thanks to my new friend, the establishment's accommodating and ever industrious barkeep.

You see me and hear me. You even recognize my name, yet you have no clue who I am. Any intermittent inquirers are just nosy. Most really don't give a damn.

For what once burned white hot inside me has now since been well doused out. All that is left is my music.

And my prominently deep, sunken, eerily affixed eyes, constantly staring ahead, yet never more searching about.

But my gift is my passion, and my trade which I ply.

So I continue to play for you, lest if I stop, what's left of me will die.

So tap your hands, guzzle your drinks and laugh silly with your friends out past those lights, my numerous fans, none of whom I can name, as if you were all ghosts. As long as I play, you don't care nor want to know, pretty much the same as most.

Another part of my life has killed me, it's agonizing yoke too hard to bear, as I only languish to pay its infinite toll.

For this dark eyed musician, it is just his music and you, for tonight, that will both inflate as well as animate, his very tortured and lonely soul.

So between sips, taps and laughs, look deep into the dark. In the shadows of the stage's corner, what you see is no lark.

Alone in a crowded room, I struggle to produce your coveted sweet tunes that can make you laugh or even cry. Yet I cannot stop playing, or else the rest of me will die.

So squint past those bright showy lights into the dismal corner to illuminate what is true. Now just a musician, I once was a vibrant, happy, living man.

And but by the Grace of God, the same can happen to you.

Doug Wrenn

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