Three poems by Jack Douthitt

March 16th, 2016


Poet Jack Douthitt writes these poems in “tanka” form (similar to haiku but five lines instead of three). 
The first line is the name of the artist, the second line is the name of the song, and the third line is the name of the album (if applicable).  Each five line poem then follows.

“Modern Jazz Quartet” and Dizzy Gillespie appear in Douthitt’s chapbook Riffin’ Around.



Gerry Mulligan

My Funny Valentine

What is There to Say?


Swinging baritone sax

soaring trumpet

wrap my

funny valentine

in cool love





Modern Jazz Quartet

Blues in C Minor

Blues on Bach


opening riff

shakes Bach

stirs us

into a dry








Dizzy Gillespie

Salt Peanuts


Cheeks puff out

trumpets scream…


never sounded

so good






Jack Douthitt is the author of the non-fiction book Bonsai – The Art of Living Sculpture published by Rizzoli International in 2001. In 1987 he was recognized as “One of Americas Outstanding Bonsai Artists” by the National Bonsai Foundation. His prose fiction has been published in Out of Line, Rosebud, Flash Fiction Fridays, and heard on Milwaukee Public Radio. His poetry has been featured on The Song Is, and published in a chapbook titled Riffin’ Around. In 2015 he appeared in the Milwaukee production of “Listen to Your Mother.” He lives in Milwaukee WI with his bonsai and his wife, Michelle.


Share this:

Comment on this article:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

In this Issue

“The Jazz Photography Issue” features an interview with today’s most eminent jazz portrait photographer Carol Friedman, news from Michael Cuscuna about newly released Francis Wolff photos, as well as archived interviews with William Gottlieb, Herman Leonard, Lee Tanner, a piece on Milt Hinton, a new edition of photos from Veryl Oakland, and much more…

On the Turntable

This month, a playlist of 18 recently released jazz recordings by six artists -- Joshua Redman, Joe Lovano. Matt Brewer, Tom Harrell, Zela Margossian, and Aaron Burnett

Short Fiction

"Crossing the Ribbon" by Linnea Kellar is the winning story of the 51st Jerry Jazz Musician Short Fiction Contest


Seventeen poets contribute to the Summer, 2019 collection of jazz poetry reflecting an array of energy, emotion and improvisation

“What are 4 or 5 of your all-time favorite Blue Note albums?”

Dianne Reeves, Nate Chinen, Gary Giddins, Michael Cuscuna, Eliane Elias and Ashley Kahn are among the 12 writers, musicians, and music executives who list and write about their favorite Blue Note albums

Pressed for All Time

In an excerpt from his book Pressed for All Time, Michael Jarrett interviews producer John Snyder about the experience of working with Ornette Coleman at the time of his 1977 album Dancing in Your Head


“Charles Ingham’s Jazz Narratives” — a continuing series


Poetry by John Stupp and Michael L. Newell


Jerry Jazz Musician regularly publishes a series of posts featuring excerpts of the photography and stories/captions found in Jazz in Available Light by Veryl Oakland. In this edition, Mr. Oakland's photographs and stories feature Art Pepper, Pat Martino and Joe Williams.


Maxine Gordon, author of Sophisticated Giant: The Life and Legacy of Dexter Gordon, discusses her late husband’s complex, fascinating life.

Short Fiction

“A Viennese Tale,” a story by Matias Travieso-Diaz, was a finalist in our recently concluded 51st Short Fiction Contest.

In the previous issue

Michael Cuscuna, Mosaic Records co-founder, is interviewed about his successful career as a jazz producer, discographer, and entrepreneur...

Coming Soon

An interview with Nate Chinen, director of editorial content at WBGO Radio, former New York Times jazz writer, and the author of Playing Changes: Jazz in the New Century.

Contributing writers

Site Archive