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The Secret Lives of the Upper Extended Tertians

Thirteenths jiving up and over and out— major, minor;
borrowing, dropping— we'll sip citronensaft,
get up, and leave them alone in their naïve arrogance.
Oh! for the day of the perfect fifth!
Apple-orchards hardly dangle so ornamental,
brilliantly holding hands in hearts' prayer.
Doctor White made the claim that an eleventh
could be perfect. You trusted him, you hate him now:
You would rather use a ninth. I would trust Doctor Black:
"How about a downward suspension?
Think of a thousand peach-toned madrigals
fluttering to a breathless halt in your arms...."
But we could have lived and died without those thirds.
Don't 'front me when you try and cadence!
Don't dirty my ears with that mud-pie dissonance!
Just look at poor major seventh dangling alone
in good company, faithfully awaiting a resolution that
France stole from her over a hundred shaky years ago.
Where did you get those sharp elevenths? Put them down!
before they snake-charm their way to the ancient tonic.
Why not try it with a IV-chord instead?        Boo!
Mister "perfect" ninth squares your heart again,
and I secretly caress your silent sob into my ribcage—
Never so awkward, barely that beautiful.


Doctor White and Doctor Black are real people, and those are their real names.

9 Mar 04

Rated 5 (6.5) by 3 users.
Active (3):
Inactive (12): 1, 1, 2, 2, 6, 6, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 9, 10, 10, 10

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Odd and kinda abstract. I like it. Big discriptions for big areas i think. Im not sure i understood but it was fun to read.
 — Romanspring

Sorry. It's a music theory thing. I know it's niche-oriented; but I wanted to see if anyone would understand without knowing music theory.
 — zepplin42

That's a pretty well-tempered piece. However, your cry to not be 'fronted at is a bit of a wolf, if I say so myself.

Ah, the opportunities for puns. I like puns. There's definitely music in your words, good sirrah, though the theory is above my level (despite my attempts at learning it; however reading and acting on theory are drastically different things, and I have yet to have the opportunity to act on higher-level music theory, le sigh). It sounds and flows very nicely though. I have to question the break between 19-20 though, as that seems like it mgiht perhaps have been an oversight there? If not an oversight, then I'd recommend switching that exclamation to '!," for the benefit of line 20. (also, you missed a 'w' in 'awkward' in the last line.)
 — manikin

Zepplin, once again, you amaze me. This and "On the Ten Wives of Nathaniel Skedstead " are really fantastic. You have a real knack for keeping things interesting and original.
 — onklcrispy

Why, thank you both.

Manikin, you hit on one of the most conscious things I did with this. Before I completely accept your suggestion, I'd like a few more comments on the ending lf l19. I was going for a "Put that down!" like when your mom sees you holding the vase with her father's ashes or the big French knife. Aforbing's got the best line in on these punctualitification issues, so maybe she could help.

Onk, thanks a million. It's what I live for.
 — zepplin42

I think I'm going to retract that suggestion, actually. "!," I don't think is the solution; it does detract from the immediacy that you were going for on the phrase. Better as it stands.
 — manikin

i got lost
no offense
 — unknown

i like it that u tried to put enthusiasm but it didn't really work
 — normalgirl90

i got lost
 — unknown

pretty cool
but im a bit lost
 — normalgirl90

Okay, okay, okay. The deal is that the poem is talking about the emotions generally conveyed by tertian harmonies in music theory. I was hoping that I was able to argue it poetically so that non-musicians would feel it, too. More feedback would help, though.
 — zepplin42

Wow, this is great. I simply love the references to music theory and how you use them so well with the story and dialogue. This is great, just great, great, great— you totally had me enthralled from the first line. This is definitely one of my favorites.
 — Rixes

This was fun to read. Very witty, and you were able to convey some to the feeling that is produced musically.  I like too much of it to comment on individual parts.  I hate to tell you, though, that I think the chances of anyone unfamiliar with music theory understanding this (or particuarly enjoying or appreciating it for that matter) are about as good as Pamela Nichole Smith's chances of joining mensa.
 — akiikii

Either Pamela Anderson or Anna Nicole Smith. But yeah either way.
 — unknown

i like it.
i understood parts of it, but i know a little music theory.
not much, so a little of it was lost on me.

even then, it was still a wonderful read.
 — shakeit

I like this alot.
I write music myself and I appreciate your use of theory in this poem. Thats creative.  But what do you have against thirds dude?  Minor thirds are great.
JK :)
Great work.
 — Bruce

Bad news: I know music theory so I can't test it with an ignorant mind

Good news: I love it.

I would say the 'boo' is overdone but otherwise a lovely piece with a strong voice. Not sure I approve of using the names doctor black and white because that just seems facetious (whether or not they're real) but you pulled off whatever you did.

I do agree that people will not understand this if they don't study music. There are too many subtle references to the emotions of intervals that will be lost on an unmusical ear. But it's worth keeping this for those it isn't lost on.
 — kalika

I am a three...
 — greenwall