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POEM: Friday night at the Vanguard

Hard as it is to believe, I went to my first show at the Village Vanguard in New York tonight. The band was Terrell Stafford, Bruce Barth, Tim Warfield, Peter Washington and Dana Hall. I wrote this in the dark during the set. I wanted it to seem a bit noirish, thus “the blond.” I’m not sure if that’s OK.

Friday night at the Vanguard

there’s something about the way the blond
is tilting her head, laying it back
against the cushions like she’s dreaming

— stop —

now we’re in church and a “go ‘head”
comes from stage left
where the trumpeter sits snapping his fingers
in what would be a cliche in other circumstances

the blond leans forward
she has a cleft in her chin like an action hero
on her it’s intriguing

— can I get an “amen”? —

it’s a ballad again
she leans over so far you’d think
she had a stomach ache, but she’s smiling

Published in Jazz Music My poems New York City Poetry


  1. i don’t object to “the blond” (not in the poem — ha!) but i also didn’t get “noir.” maybe it’s ok if it’s just “she” throughout?

    looks like you’re going to lots of cool places!

  2. I’ll try it that way, too. Thanks!

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