25 October 2008, performed by Laurie Anderson
“Pictures were everywhere and began to replace things.”
Technology has invited display-based images to befriend us, leaving us less physically engaged with others is it.
She laments the lost art: conversation, emphasizing the specifics of words, cadence, repetition, and irony.
She lures us in with fields of memory evoking color washes—the ocean side, a sunset, stars in darkness, comet-tail spotlights, beginning to visualize a space within which to imagine scenes.
Multiple media offers a variety of short trips to emotions or locations through light and song, sound and story, general to specific.
Entertainment is mixed with a call for activity, “There’s trouble at the mine.”
Cinematic reference for civic unification from swinging door saloon,
“There’s trouble at the mine,” she says more urgently.
We clap. (She couldn’t possible mean us.)
We go to sleep, perhaps to dream of Laurie, forgetting to listen for the canary.