You may not remember me, but I am a constituent of your friend Laura,
and I am just writing to express my appreciation. You once, in my presence,
spoke out in favor of the state supporting the academy and the project
of literature and it did me some good to hear you say that. You see,
I have recently taken an interest in local politics because I am an
aspiring local songwriter and I write songs exclusively about Urbana.
Anyhow the reason I am writing is to applaud you on your performance
at last week's Urbana City Council meeting. I hadn't anticipated that
the new recycling ordinance would lead to so much disagreement between
council members. I certainly hadn't anticipated that the issue of the
recycling buckets would be resolved by an arm-wrestling match. Nor had
I anticipated Whalen's 2-hour filibuster during which he argued against
Urbana having any recycling program at all because he once cut his finger
on the edge of a can of pork as he was rinsing it out to recycle it.
It was a tense and, to be honest, not altogether entirely captivating
meeting, so the snap of the latches on your violin case, when you opened
it, brought a light to the room as if you had thrown circuit-breakers
on the fusebox in a tenement basement. It was like the rumble of distant
thunder during a drought, and the room took on the sweetness of the
air before a cloudburst. Then when you took the floor with Bach's second
violin partita in D minor I felt like I was a sensuous Spanish dance
turned loose in an austere European court. I was afraid the sounds of
your strings would be drowned out by the ostinato of my trembling heart.
Even the mayor wiped away a tear.
Thanks and keep up the good work,
P.S. I have enclosed a copy of my cassette "Prairie Metal." Most of
the tracks are for solo electric ukelele. My main musical influences
are men with long hair who play squealy electric guitar solos. Track
listing is as follows:
1. Paring at the Herring - a song about my work as a prep chef in a
local vegetarian restaurant
2. Broken Heartland - a song about how farmland in Tuscola was converted
to a mall when Tim Johnson overrode the customary waiting period.
3.We Don't Need Another Chief - a song that argues eloquently against
the University of Illinois even having an athletic program, much less
a racist mascot.
4. Hip To be Square - a song for a failed campaign to revive the reputation
of a mall in downtown Urbana.
5. Strawberry Fields Twelve Hours - an ad for a local health food store