“Listening to Charlie Parker, Play Jazz, In the Dark” — a poem by Alan Yount

September 13th, 2018

 

 

 

 

Listening to Charlie Parker, Play Jazz, In the Dark
 For Charlie Parker with Strings

 

charlie parker
sits on the end
of my bed
holding his alto sax.

and for pete’s sake!  mr. traps:
buddy rich was also there,
getting his drum kit ready
by the end of the bed.

then ray brown’s there
and making a move
to pick up my old kay bass
with birds eye maple!

and somehow the violins
have snuck in by the door
followed closely
by mitch miller on oboe.

… an oboe has an estranged sound.
(the word oboe … almost sounds
like the sound, when it’s playing),
but it definitely works itself in.

 

*****

 

I imagine I can still see
charlie parker “the bird.”
… nodding to him
he gets ready for “just friends.”

the strings start up:
they have an incredible fluidity,
and the sounds
float up in the room.

the violins
lifted up everything
and “the bird,” was wonderful …
and flew up there too.

I had been dozing off
but then I remembered surely
that I did not play alto sax
as clearly as I was playing it now.

 

*****

 

listening to jazz
in the dark at night
there’s a different dimension
bringing together all the notes …

so much closer
and closer.

and then all of a sudden

you … are … there!

playing along

with all of them.

 

 

 

_____

 

 

 

 

Alan Yount lives on the north bank of the Missouri River, just south of Columbia, Missouri, and has taken poetic inspiration from boating and floating the river for many years. His poems have been published in a variety of publications, including Palo Alto Review, Roanoke Review, Spring…the Journal of E.E. Cummings Society, Apostrophe Magazine, Columbia College Journal of the Literary Arts, Modern Haiku, Pegasus Review, and Tidepool Magazine. Alan also plays jazz trumpet, and has led his own dance band. He is a direct descendant of the famous frontiersman, Daniel Boone.

 

 

*

 

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9 comments on ““Listening to Charlie Parker, Play Jazz, In the Dark” — a poem by Alan Yount”

  1. I enjoyed reading your poem, Mr. Yount. I also learned something I had not previously known. I had no idea that Mitch Miller ever played in a session with Charlie Parker. That astounds me. I like the idea of the musicians and instruments actually being present in the room with you.

  2. I enjoyed reading your poem, Mr. Yount. I also learned something I had not previously known. I had no idea that Mitch Miller ever played in a session with Charlie Parker. That astounds me. I like the idea of the musicians and instruments actually being present in the room with you.

  3. Knowing Alan for 6 decades we both came from homes with music inside- playing and listening to music was a big part of our lives- playing music gives you the ability to admire those who do it better, as they serve as an inspiration- My Grandmother once told me “no one can take your music from you” and she was right- Alan is inspired by the music we played and the wonderful players to whom we listened- all these years later, that is what Alan has engendered in those of the same collective mind.
    Scott Heuer

  4. Knowing Alan for 6 decades we both came from homes with music inside- playing and listening to music was a big part of our lives- playing music gives you the ability to admire those who do it better, as they serve as an inspiration- My Grandmother once told me “no one can take your music from you” and she was right- Alan is inspired by the music we played and the wonderful players to whom we listened- all these years later, that is what Alan has engendered in those of the same collective mind.
    Scott Heuer

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