Not a trumpet.
There was nothing brash or bawdy,
no reveille or brass.
Not a drum.
As much as we tried, we never could
get the rhythm right.
Not a guitar.
It would have required unwrapping our
fingers from one another.
Not a bass.
For all its depth, it didn’t have the
high notes we required.
Not a cymbal.
The “tsk, tsk, tsk” would have reminded us
too much of your shame.
We were none
but we were all. We were the
whole jazz band:
the brooding horn, the step of the djembe,
the spur of the hi-hats and the weight
of the uprights in our chests,
writing a melody as we went along,
stumbling without rhyme or reason
deeper into one another.
Cover photo by Spencer Imbrock.