A Theory of Sentimental Comedy
We’re reading of Terence in the TLS
And the fucking’s getting loud next door.
What ought our next act be?
Does an ethic prescribe radio until cessation—
Ensues? The paranoia of prurience urges “yes,”
Or they may sense the silence
Of an unrelenting listener.
As though they care,
As though they hear the hearing.
The silence is dry and deep
And unhostile around their efforts.
I switch on the radio at a sotto voce moment
And turn it to just above pianissimo,
The presenter’s soft lilt filling the middle air.
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