Tunis, Tunisia March 19 2012


When I was in Jordan some years ago, the muezzin cried from the mosque minaret waking me in the morning in Al-Aqaba, then at different moments in the day; I didn’t mind, the chanting then was beautiful, and spiritual, it came as if from a mechanical baroque bird perched on the minaret at dawn, mid noon, sundown, different stages in the sailing of the sun-boat. He was singing, making music, and people came to pray.
But here in Tunis the muezzin cries through a megaphone, through auditorium speakers.
It bothers me most of all because here when they chant they sing falsely. The muezzin singing now is not trying to hold a note, he is simply in love with the holiness of the fact that he is chanting and that he won.

(At 5 Am they make a point of singing for an hour with an air raid siren tone, like a new bomber plane of sick blind hope and courage is taking off.)

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