Do That Jazz Poem
The cigarette is burning down almost to my fingers
And I’m worried that I may not be able to tap-tap
out a proper be-bop beat,
so fast, so sweet
with a whiskey burn that comes from the street.
With sweat pouring down over the keys,
I’m unable to unlock the door to
The secret revelations.
There is the heartening cry for more, Please!,
Give us your spiritual sensations.
We want, we want, we want that
Proper be-bop beat. But I can’t give
you no more, when you’re sitting on my hands.
Your unrealistic demands plead and pour
through me like altruistic sweat.
I want to ride; I want to fly like a bird,
sacred in the sky, burnt out on the ground.
I want to go my way with pride,
Long angling stride,
And so so far away from the lost and found.
You want me to do that thing,
slender reed or plucking on an A-string.
But I don’t do for you like you don’t do for me
Because you can’t see through my eyes
And never will.
You want me to do, to do, to do
to myself what I cannot do to you.
And if I go (or if I stay)
What will you say to me? Stay or go?
No. The time is ripe for a proper be-bop beat.
Listen! Sit! Yes, have a seat and I will
tell you a different story.
Keep your eyes open and alive while I
strive to reminisce. Just a little kiss
to put you to sleep
and then I’ll slip out into the night.
Wide awake the next morning, a fright
comes into your heart. What seems
to be a vanishing act
was only just a dream.
H.B. Berlow studied film-making and creative writing at the University of Miami in the 80s, was involved in the Boston Poetry Scene in the 90s, and was the former president of the Kansas Writer’s Association from 2012 to 2013. The historical crime fiction series, Ark City Confidential and Secrets of the Righteous, published through The Wild Rose Press, is currently available on Amazon.