PE (born 23-11-1950 / Cape Town, South Africa)

Enter Jazz

In the past few weeks
(1995, I think)
A whole field of music
Has knocked on my door.
Jazz has made my acquaintance.
Jazz who has always before
Seemed so stale, so staid,
So stuck in a groove
Sometime back in the thirties,
Jazz now emerges
As the most delightful companion.

I first noticed
My new friend
On the Voice of America,
A sudden lightness of spirit
Lighting up my room
Through the transistor radio.

Then Nancy, Carolyn's mum in Ferny Creek,
Turned out to be a jazz fan
With a collection of cassettes,
And I abandoned myself
To jazz's invitation
To dance,
Easy, free-flowing steps
Up and down
The lounge-room carpet.

Last night
The friendship firmed further:
In the E.G. Guide
Was listed a jazz trio
Which they claimed could be heard
At the Albert Park Hotel
Not far away.
The trio swelled to seven or eight musicians
As the evening unfolded
And I drank in the rhythms
Of what a chat with their apparent leader, Bill,
Revealed was traditional jazz
In the Chicago style,
So sweet, so gentle, so softly swinging.
Jazz took my arm
And smiled.

I have a new friend.

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