Burning the Midnight Oil (for Melvin Van Peebles)

The chattering of the crowd in my mind, reflections of a nighttime moment, a conversation, cleaver word play, as I was crying for a plan, I cram to understand. Hold that breath, that thought, abandon all preconceptions and sink into this here groove.

The blue of her shadow can’t emulate the glow of your light:
ah, bring back that old flame, that old southern comfort, ordinary vocabulary, syncopated rhythm.

It ain’t so easy livin on stream of consciousness. I say, give me the gift of conversation. But the moment was brief: heaven sometimes fails, forgets where they placed the angel.

And the Gershwin bros script:
The way your smile just beams
the way you sing off-key
no,no, they can’t take that away from me.

the way you hold your knife
the way we danced till three, no, no…”

Forget where you come from, and dance; final irony.
I got lyrics to match the moment, lyrics to boot.
SPECIFICS: flowers that transform at a touch, emulate internal light. Crooning on an untuned piano, playing those keys. Taste of a cigar and sweet pungent smell of lamp oil caressing my mind.

Provocative place, yet all the world’s a stage.
Forever hold your peace, your place in this world, I thought.

I flipped the script and moved to the beat of a different drum.
“Either slow or stupid” were the words presented to me on a silver platter…the cues ignored like the track star at the runner’s block: dreaming of the finish line, so deep in thought he didn’t hear the starting gun BANG fired and BAM, off they go, just to leave our old friend back at the gate. No, not trying to be deep, my friend, not profound, just reflecting.

God is in the details.
Repete, s’il vous plait. God IS in the details.
Simple green chair holding its own, waits for the invitation to do its job and inspire another few lines to be scripted, another few bars of melody and funky bass to be drilled in, filled in pencil (not written in stone) in the journal–“cause you know that it’s flexible and those notes upon crooning time were just made to be bent, and delicately pitched off-key, bent backwards, thrown in-between some extra bars for added flavor…
Something ails our colt, though…
The moon is smiling“, says Spaceman. And he should know…
Echoing inside my head…”some long-ago home-training jogs the memory…”; bittersweet pleasure of a conversation in motion–briefly stops, sputters, staggers like a bum pondering the long journey home, yet having nowhere to rest his head.

“People are people, everywhere the same…remember those dipped nails, finger and all?”
Back in the running, the flow begins again.

More than you know
(he knows) more than you know
(love of life) more than you know
(think about my future) more than you know
(I understand) more than you know
(it’s really) later than you think
(Sherry go down real smooth) more than you think
the synapses cross and non-sequiturs follow: later than you know, more than you think.

“bang-bang-boogie-down-bronx”, hop-skip-and a-jump to the mad flavor of the phatest s–t goin down right here in the hiz-ouse, gots to say what up to my peeps, man, I can’t be goin out like dat, you gotta lick that line, so I’ll check you out in a minute, but just remember you can’t fake the funk, b, peace out, take me out wit da fader…

contemplating thoughts of grandeur and illusion, the Dagger Speech comes to mind…”art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to sound, or art thou but a dagger of the mind, a false creation proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain, I hold thee not and yet I see thee still…”

Just wanna flip some wax down and groove, and croon…
Unwrapping my fortune cookie I ponder the words: “in youth and beauty wisdom is rare.” When the student is ready the teacher appears. Ah, raise our glasses and toast “tally-ho” to hidden agendas, lurking in the distance. A charmed girl with a charmed life…what a glowing jewel she is. She skips to the cab. “Dangerous: precious cargo inside; handle with care“.

Amen, holy ghost.
Amen, holy ghost.