|Issue 12:||March 2022|
Pasadena, California (October 2021)
A metal brace holds up the oak, its giant limbs sheltering from Santa Ana heat. Music soaks every niche of this backyard where a peacock flaunts a metal fan. Masks off for wine and “Blue Bolero,” song seeping deep inside us, swells of live emotion anything but blue. The bassist—tucked into a crook of trunk—hair aflow, she laughs, eyes the drummer, the guitars. Her fingers stretch with gusto for this afternoon rapture. Lanterns jive green above us, a terra cotta sun looks on from a thick oak arm. The band infuses, nurses us back from solitude. Fan palms beyond seem to grow from the roof of this bungalow.
1. Poem above refers to the song Blue Bolero as arranged and performed by Jim Stubblefield with the band Incendio, from their CD Summoning the Muse (2019).
2. See also this live performance of Blue Bolero by its composer Abdullah Ibrahim, accompanied by the Ekaya Ensemble, during Festival JazzAldia 2011; song is from the album African Magic (2002).
is the author of Museum of Rearranged Objects (Kelsay Books), as well as five chapbooks, including If You Spot Your Brother Floating By and Casbah (Kattywompus Press). Her poetry has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. A poem, “Ode to Malala Yousafzai,” was included on a “Heroines” episode of BBC Radio 3: Words and Music. She taught French for many years in Pasadena, California, as well as English at California State University, Los Angeles, and in Algiers, Algeria. Her new chapbook, Now, Somehow, will appear in 2022.
More about the author’s books available at her website:
See also poems online, and a list of awards.
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