Instruments: Flute Fever

Something in all living things responds mysteriously to the sound of wind in the reeds. At the gentle pleasing of a flute, certain crabs glide out of their caves and sit listening under water. Mosquitoes of some breeds collect on people playing flutes. Lions fly into panic, dogs sink into bliss—though only when the flute is played in the key of C minor. In China, the musk deer is hunted with a Judas flute, which the deer meekly follows to its doom.

People respond to the flute too, and of late with special reason: the world is now entering the golden...

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