Masguda I. Shamsutdinova's site


Rumi, Emily Dickinson, and Tatar Sufi Poetry by Zai Circle

Dialogue # 2
Posted on October 1st, 2009 by admin
Event Date:
Thursday, October 8, 2009 - 19:30 - 22:30
Dialogue # 2: "Language of the Spirit" Convergence of 3 Centuries.
The Good Sheppard Chapel Performance Space
4649 Sunnyside Ave. North (corner of 50th St. in Wallingford)
4th floor,
Seattle, WA 98103
Show times: 7:30 pm
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Featuring. KeLan: 5 and 6 string electric basses, acoustic and electric guitars, loops. Masguda Shamsutdinova: voice. Greg Sinibladi: EWI. (electronic wind instrument). Steve Banks: snare drums and cymbals. DJ Gentle Gee: turntables, loops, and beats.
The "mystical and spiritual space" we occupy-whether conscious of it or not- overlaps many different eras, cultural parallels, and dissimilarities. In this conversation we will explore these worlds through the poetry of Rumi (1207-1273), and Emily Dickenson (1830-1860), interpreted in a modern (2009), dialogue, through spoken word/voice, electric guitars, loops, electric basses, turntables/beats and samples, EWI (electronic wind instrument), and percussion. We will cross these cultural generations of technology and sound and explore this conversation in three distinct languages: Russian, Tatarstan, and English, engaging the Avant Garde in our own unique “modern” voice of now.


  1. Breath (Persian) built on “A” pedal

Start: Masguda: voice. KeLan: Fretless Bass,
Add: Geene: Turntable
Add Steve: Snare.
Add Greg (EWI)

Introduction/welcome to Dialogue #2: KeLan

  1. “After great pain, a formal feeling comes”
    Emily Dickenson
    After great pain, a formal feeling comes –
    The Nerves sit ceremonious, like Tombs –
    The stiff Heart questions was it He, that bore,
    And Yesterday, or Centuries before?
    The Feet, mechanical, go round –
    Of Ground, or Air, or Ought –
    A Wooden way
    Regardless grown,
    A Quartz contentment, like a stone –
    This is the Hour of Lead –
    Remembered, if outlived,
    As Freezing persons, recollect the Snow –
    First – Chill – then Stupor – then letting go

    Start: Masguda: voice. Geene grab samples of Masguda but do not mix yet. Add: KeLan: Guitar: add/loops/bass, Greg: EWI, Add Steve: kit. Add: Geene: Turntable/loops

  2. “Hope” is the thing with feathers
    Emily Dickinson
    “Hope” is the thing with the feathers –
    That perches in the soul –
    And sings the tune without words –
    And never stops – at all –
    And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –
    And sore must be a storm –
    That could abash the little bird
    That kept so many warm –
    I’ve heard it in the chillest land –
    And on the strangest Sea –
    Yet, never, in Extremity
    It asked a crumb of Me.

Start: Steve: snare/kit, Geene turntables
Add: Masguda: voice. After percussion and voice-add Greg (EWI) add Kelan: basses

1 4. Last night the Moon Came dropping its clothes in the street

Last night the Moon
Came dropping its clothes in the street,
I took it as a sign start singing
Falling up into the bowl of sky.
The stars vanish as the sun comes up,
All streams stream toward the ocean,
I drank the moon’s reflection.
Start: Greg (EWI), Masguda voice
Add: KeLan, Geene, Steve as it feels

1 5. Bittersweet

In my hallucination
I saw my beloved’s flower garden
In my vertigo
In my dizziness
In my drunken haze
Whirling and dancing
Like a spinning wheel
I saw myself
As a source of existence.
I was there in the beginning
And I was the spirit of love.
Now I am sober
There is only the hangover
And the memory of love
And only the sorrow
I yearn for happiness.
I ask help
I want mercy.
And my love says
Look at me and hear me
Because I’m here just for that.
I am your moon
And your moonlight too

I am your flower garden
And your water too.
I have come all this way
Eager for you
Without shoes or shawl.
I want you laugh
To kill all your worries
To love you
To nourish you
Oh Sweet Bitterness!
I will soothe you and heal you
I will bring you roses
I too have been covered with thorns.

Start: Geene Turntables, Masguda voice, KeLan guitar
Add: Greg, Steve, as it feels-

  1. I felt my life with both my hands
    Emily Dickinson
    I felt my life with both my hands
    To see if it was there—
    I held my spirit to the Glass,
    To prove it possibler—
    I turned my Being round and round
    And paused at every pound
    To ask the Owner's name—
    For doubt, that I should know the Sound—
    I judged my features—jarred my hair—
    I pushed my dimples by, and waited—
    If they—twinkled back—
    Conviction might, of me—
    I told myself, "Take Courage, Friend—
    That—was a former time—
    But we might learn to like the Heaven,
    As well as our Old Home!"

Start: Greg, (EWI), Steve, add Masguda voice
Add: KeLan disroted guitar/bass, Geene as it feels
10 minute intermission

Audience discussion and musicians response:
Comparison of two poems read by KeLan
The Brain – is wider than the Sky
Emily Dickinson
The Brain – is wider than the Sky –
For – put them side by side –
The one the other will contain
With ease – and You – beside –
The Brain is deeper than the Sea –
For – hold them – Blue to Blue –
The one the other will absorb – As Sponges – Buckets – do –
The Brain is just the weight of God –
For – heft them – Pound for Pound –
And they will differ – if they do –
A Syllable from Sound –

Where Are WE?
An invisible bird flies over,
But casts a quick shadow. What is the body? That shadow of a shadow
Of your love, that somehow contains the entire universe.
Discussion: The "mystical and spiritual space" we occupy-whether conscious of it or not- overlaps many different eras, cultural parallels, and dissimilarities. What does “Language of the Spirit” mean to you? How does (or doesn’t) this overlap play into your life?
KeLan reads statements and asks audience to pick two Zai Circle players to make a short response. Players improvise response based on comment.

For Once I stood in the White Windy Presence of Eternity:
Where is Everything is Music
Rumi.Translated by Coleman Barks
Don’t worry about saving these songs!
And if one our instruments breaks,
It doesn’t matter.
We have fallen into the place
Where is everything is music.
The strumming and the flute notes

Rise into the atmosphere,
And even if the whole world’s harp
Should burn up, there will still be
Hidden instruments playing.
So the candle flickers and goes out.
We have a piece of flint, and a spark.
This singing art is sea foam.
The grace movements come from a pearl
Somewhere on the ocean floor.
Poems reach up like spindrift and the edge
Of driftwood along the beach, wanting!
They drive
From a slow and powerful root
That we can’t see.
Stop the words now.
Open the window in the center of your chest,
And let spirits fly in and out.
Start: All players as it feels