Poetry by Samantha Noll

March 29th, 2011






Impromptu Blues





The bass player was out of synch
tonight while the singer was on fire.

But she had to wait while he shuffled
through page after page of music;

the drummer tap tap tapped his drum
as the pianist stroked the ivory notes,
so smooth and warm under fingertips;

They were waiting for the bass player
to let go and just feel the music, feel
the notes coursing through his being.

This night when the singer was on fire:
Wild notes rising like ashes to the sky,
embers in the air hanging there patiently,

so like those notes I wrote you long ago,
now flames to the fire of passion-

This night a wild Impromptu session
if only for the bass player…my heart
not quite finding the beat of love.
We are lost in a wilderness of notes.





The Green Door




While sitting in a booth
at the back of
The Green Door,
an old blues club in
the heart of Michigan,

I watch a sea of
people between me
and the stage, dance
and sway and laugh
their troubles away,
if only for the night.

Here in heart of
Michigan- where the rot
of a failing economy fills
your nostrils as it eats away
the auto industry,

you can see people
along the highways
wearing trash bags in
the rain, clutching signs
dripping with desperation
that say simply: “Will work
for food. I have a family
to feed.”

So it’s no wonder,
that blues has come back
to this place- or rather
that people have come back
to blues- the music of
hard times and hard knocks
and, most of all, heart
in the face of it all.

As I sit here in a booth
at the back of The Green
Door, there is a sea of
people between me
and stage, dancing
and laughing and swaying
to the music, as if
this were a juke joint
of old-

Heart and soul
and audacity in the
face of it all shimmering
from the sequined dress
of the singer on stage.


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