William Vlach


Sagacity of the Nose

Because of this virus I began to pay close attention to my nose.  I was wrong of course.  It’s not about the nose.  It’s about the cough, fever, etc.  But in times like these, no one is truly rational.  So I was paying close attention to my nose breathing.  That kind of attention is like a microscope.  After a while I could experience every individual nose hair— each wavering in the inhale and exhale.  Once when I was birding, a large biologist in front of me farted.  I thought he’d be embarrassed.  Instead, he just smiled and said, “Good air in, bad air out.”  Words to live by.  But right now it seems like all we’re trying to do is to avoid the reverse.  So the more I paid attention to my nose hairs and their movements, I noticed that they were making interesting sounds, like wheat stalks in the wind.  Like palm trees in a storm.  Then it shifted to a long sad note like from a Japanese flute.  I sneezed and there was Bird blowing bebop.  Now I spend most days nose breathing Beethoven’s Ode to Joy.  

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One thought on “Sagacity of the Nose

  1. dgbull on said:

    The Nose (sic) certainly have it with this
    fine n’ode (sic) to the sacrifices our smallest body parts make for the good of the whole.
    Beautiful!!! Thank you!

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