The Tenor Man

 
Pottering around the stage,
a hyperactive ancient in his own backyard -
independent of the band it seems.

Disrhythmic shuffling of ashtray,
beer, a pack of cigarettes,
adjusting microphones,

then in the middle eight
he draws, exhales, and catches breath,
stoops forward to the mouthpiece

and blows,
a tumbling counterpoint,
scales soaring from his horn.

The melody flows

until the break,
and then he shoulders arms,
a truce between the music and his ailing lungs.

Between choruses he sits apart
to light another cigarette,
a sideman counting out the bars
until he rises for the coda -
this Lazarus of swing.
               - Adrian Green
        
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Emily Dickinson
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Henry David Thoreau
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Ralph Waldo Emerson
Robert Frost
Sylvia Plath
William Butler Yeats
William Shakespeare
William Wordsworth