Dear busker

Please imagine the days that I spend with you. I work atop the building outside of which you busk. I arrive to hear you playing, saying to my colleague, "there he is again" or "already?" "He's been here all morning," she says. I hear the three — or four or five — songs you play and then I hear you play those three — or four or five — songs again. You get distracted and stop. I look out the window. I see you chatting. I forget about you. I chat with my colleague, nestle to work. I then hear you begin to play those three — or four or five — songs again. You'll do this every day for about a month, at which you'll then promote yourself to an evening shift, or give up entirely, having "tried to make it" with those three — or four or five — songs.

I've discerned your capacity for imagination. I imagine your spirit is — as you might put it — wild. I would instead internalize this spirit with attempts to control it, to better know it, to captivate its energy. Protect what you do and do it wisely — also respect it, knowing well of those who do what you do with less naiveté, more seriousness and craft. Those humiliated by the lineage to which their musicianship participates, those with enough confidence to envision a world with respect to their place in it. They consider how their actions influence the perspective of others.

The perspective I've since deliberated in drafting this letter makes working beside you unbearable, as I felt obligated to share these thoughts communally, instating value to their witness.

— Nathanael Roney
The writer is the senior graphic designer at Mountain Xpress.


Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

One thought on “Dear busker

  1. parrish rhodes

    Oh, my, Nathanael…sigh!…did it really make you feel better to put down that busker in that fashion? Shame.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.