“Nina” — a poem by Luis Lazaro Tijerina

August 9th, 2017




To me jazz meant a way of thinking, a way of being.  Jazz was another aspect of the whole thing, so in that sense I was a jazz singer…but every other way I most definitely wasn’t.

— Nina Simone





Eunice Kathleen Waymon, also known as
Nina Simone — I hear you now —
O no one has ever been Blue like you!
So long, Miss Blue, your ways more blue than indigo,
your heart that sung to piano jazz in hot notes
that fell like a shower of stars, dazzling the
shadows of the night…
No other woman sang jazz songs like you, Nina.
I don’t have to explain that to you,
beautiful Blue-Black Woman…
your words still reach me today
ripening into song as they flow
from your lips and hair…
You never let me be lonely
Little Girl Blue, I am your chauffeur of words,
surrendering to the power of your songs…
I am your chauffeur, Nina, carrying you
wherever you want to go.



“NINA” is published in 23 Jazz Poems And Other Works by Luis Lazaro Tijerina (RA Press)


Luis Lazaro Tijerina, born in Salina, Kansas in 1945, received his formal education at Kansas State University and Vermont College of Norwich University.  He has a Masters of Arts in history.  After serving in the U.S. Army, he began his writing career as a poet.  Mr. Tijerina is also an essayist in military history.  Mr. Tijerina has made his living as a futbol (soccer) coach throughout his adult life.





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In This Issue

This issue features an interview with Bing Crosby biographer Gary Giddins; a collection of poetry devoted to the World War II era; and a new edition of “Reminiscing in Tempo,” in which the question “What are 3 or 4 of your favorite jazz recordings of the 1940’s” is posed to Rickie Lee Jones, Chick Corea, Tom Piazza and others.


In this edition of Reminiscing in Tempo,, Chick Corea, Rickie Lee Jones, Tom Piazza, Gary Giddins, Randy Brecker, Michael Cuscuna, Terry Teachout and many others answer the question, “What are 3 or 4 of your favorite recordings of the 1940’s?”


Interview with Bing Crosby biographer Gary Giddins, author of the new book "Swinging on a Star: The War Years, 1940 - 1946"


Eight poets — John Stupp, Aurora Lewis, Michael L. Newell, Robert Nisbet, Alan Yount, Roger Singer, dan smith and Joan Donovan — write about the era of World War II

The Joys of Jazz

Award winning radio producer and host Bob Hecht shares his love of jazz through his podcasts on his site “The Joys of Jazz.” In this edition, he tells two stories; the history of the virtual anthem of World War II, “I’ll Be Seeing You,” and the friendship and musical rapport of Bing Crosby and Louis Armstrong.

Short Fiction

Hannah Draper of Ottawa, Ontario is the winner of the 49th Jerry Jazz Musician New Short Fiction Award. Her story is titled "Will You Play For Me?"

Coming Soon

Three prominent scholars in a conversation about the lives of Billie Holiday, Ralph Ellison, and Langston Hughes (pictured)

Contributing writers

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