Like an elimination diet


Jazz is.

At least the jazz where you have different members of the unit play off of each other and then take turns playing solo, or at least being featured. What makes it for you, the music?

Last night, we went to the bluewhale, (that’s how they spell it) downtown LA, to listen to East-West JazzScene quintet. Let’s just say that it was a nice evening out, rounding out our vacation with some music other than the street musicians we caught along the way. It was great to watch the fellows working together, working separately. And that’s when I thought about the diet, one method of figuring out what food someone may be allergic to. I remember when we did it with D#2 and got her to the potato stage. That was a real solo act.

Thank G-d she grew out of whatever it was.

But what was an unexpected treat was the poem by Rumi on the ceiling.

I spent a long time tapping the words that I could catch onto my phone during much of the first set. I had no idea that it was actually easy enough to find it online. But of course, that made sense.


What is the deep listening? Sama is
a greeeting from the secret ones inside

the heart, a letter. The branches of
your intelligence grow new leaves in

the wind of this listening. The body
reaches a peace. Rooster sound comes,

reminding you of your love for dawn.
The reed flute and the singer’s lips:

the knack of how spirit breathes into
us becomes as simple and ordinary as

eating and drinking. The dead rise with
the pleasure of listening. If someone

can’t hear a trumpet melody, sprinkle
dirt on his head and declare him dead.

Listen, and feel the beauty of your
separation, the unsayable absence.

There’s a moon inside every human being.
Learn to be companions with it. Give

more of your life to this listening. As
brightness is to time, so you are to

the one who talks to the deep ear in
your chest. I should sell my tongue

and buy a thousand ears when that
one steps near and begins to speak.

— Jalal al-Din Rumi (1207-1273)
The Glance: Songs of Soul-Meeting
translated by Coleman Barks
Viking Penguin, NY (1999)

And we were talking, ISHI and I, about the clothing of the Kohen Gadol, the High Priest featured in these weeks’ Torah portions, and all the business in the Tabernacle had to do with sight, smell, taste, but hearing? And ISHI noted the bells at the bottom of the Kohen Gadol’s garment, alternating with pomegranates (according to Rashi). And all of a sudden, we had music. Music and quiet, music and quiet.

Elimination diet.



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