It was the big band era, lots of brass. Billy whalin’ on the drums while Johnny waited for his riff makin’ the saxophone swing.
And me, standin’ on the riser my long arms waitin’ too. “Wing span of a hawk,” mama said. Just the ticket for a trombone man.
Yeah, I could slide that brass, hear the notes strong and clear. No strings or keys, just that long smooth glide.
And Mabel at the mic, feathers clipped in henna dyed hair sultry voice in the sweet spots. Hips, always swingin’ to the beat.
Never made it big like Glenn, but we had our gigs. Glass of gin between sets and smoke swirlin’ round our heads.
They’re all gone now. Pawned my Tbone long time ago. But sometimes, while I’m sittin’ here, I can put myself back there again.
Close my eyes imaginin’ and start to sway, feel Mabel lean in real close like she did. I wheel this chair around a bit and I can feel us back there again. Swingin’ to that big band sound.
THIS POST IS BEST IF READ ALOUD!
Rewritten a bit from an older post. Shared at OLN by reading aloud at our online dVerse pub event. dVerse is a virtual pub for poets around the globe – except that once a month we have a live Zoom-like gathering where we read aloud a poem and can actually see and hear the creators of all the words we’ve been sharing for so many years at this amazing virtual pub.
jazz in the city
cello, saxophone, paper cone
playin’ for tips and the city dawgs
strummin’, blowin’, puffin’ too
flyin’ high with life
city nomad, gigs of the soul
WONDERFUL art by Claudia Schoenfeld, also one of the founders of dVerse, a poets’ pub. Could not resist writing a second sevenling to conincide with this great piece of art, Urbanity. A sevenling is composed of two tercets and one final line — and includes somehow an element of three in each of the tercets.
Swing it, oh jazz man!
Brush me lazy eights. Swish-arc-swirl, swish-arc-swirl.
Tap-atink rim shots, bass-drum-thuds.
Stick it LOUD, oh ROCK man!
KaBAM a-BANG-BAM. CRASH cymbal SPLASH.
PUMP WHOLE FOOT PEDAL. BASS DRUM BOOMS.
Soothe me melancholy, then BAM ME A BEAT.
To be read aloud. Try it!
Written for dVerse, a poet’s virtual pub, where Grace is tending bar and asks us to write a sevenling related to music. A sevenling is two tercets and a final single line – each tercet includes an element of three — here the sounds of a drummer. Celebrating the 5th anniversary of dVerse with a wonderful interview with Claudia, one of the founders and, I might add, painter extraordinaire! Painting credit: Psychedelic Drummer by Eduardo Tavares.