News concerning the poet Aurora M. Lewis

November 3rd, 2021

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Aurora M Lewis Jazz Poems

 

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…..Along with the satisfaction of publishing countless outstanding poems over the years comes my delight in getting to know many of the poets responsible for them.  From this experience an active community of writers has taken shape, most of whom share a common vision of communicating their love and appreciation for jazz music and the historic artists they revere.  One such poet is Ms. Aurora M. Lewis of Morena Valley, California.

…..I received Aurora’s first poetry submission in January of 2018, a poem titled “Chronicle Of A Love Supreme,” the opening stanza of which reads:

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He played the sax, so I acclimated myself
to John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme
I was crushing hard, being only sixteen
He was tall and thin, I thought he was cool
black shades above his sly grin
Said I was too innocent to hang with him

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…..The poem – a blues about a lost young love, reclaimed at middle age only to be lost again – is a fine example of Aurora’s heartfelt work, much of which has been published on Jerry Jazz Musician, and that I am pleased to report now appears in her new book, Jazz Poems: Reflections On a Broken Heart.

…..After years working in the finance industry, Aurora became serious about her writing in her late 50’s, when she enrolled in UCLA’s Creative Writing Program and eventually graduated with honors.  In addition to Jerry Jazz Musician, her work has appeared in many journals, including The Literary Hatchet, Gemini Magazine, The Blue Nib, and Flash Fiction Magazine.  She has twice been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and The Best of the Web.

…..Aurora’s poetry consistently communicates her rich understanding of love, loss, joy and heartache, and frequently in the vivacious rhythms of jazz music and the blues.  Her charismatic soul connects with her reader in a deeply personal way in virtually every interaction and experience, while also revealing the influence the music and its historic figures have had on her life.  Her writing is spirited, provocative, and deeply rewarding.

…..Her love of jazz, garnered from her mother, is a testament to that relationship and the effect her experiences listening to jazz had on her.  That love is evident throughout the book’s 49 poems, which touch on the likes of Thelonious Monk, Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald, and Dizzy Gillespie.

…..Jazz Poems: Reflections On a Broken Heart is available on Amazon, which can be accessed by clicking here or on the book’s cover images displayed on this page.

…..Once it’s in your hands, pull up a chair, put on some Monk, and enter her profound, passionate world…

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What Billie Sang About

Got that pain in my stomach
Breathing it out my nose
Hearing it ring inside my ears
Sucking at my breast like
a baby been starved
Filling my eyes with tears
Salt in the wound
This thing taunting
me at night, wrapping
Itself around me
without heat
I got me a case of what
Billie sang about, in search
of that lover man gone much too
long to miss him still, I feel her
pain running lucidly through
my veins

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by Aurora M. Lewis

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Jazz Poems by Aurora M. Lewis

Jazz Poems: Reflections On a Broken Heart

by Aurora M. Lewis

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In This Issue

"Nina" by Marsha Hammel
A Collection of Jazz Poetry — Winter, 2024 Edition...One-third of the Winter, 2024 collection of jazz poetry is made up of poets who have only come to my attention since the publication of the Summer, 2023 collection. What this says about jazz music and jazz poetry – and this community – is that the connection between the two art forms is inspirational and enduring, and that poets are finding a place for their voice within the pages of this website. (Featuring the art of Marsha Hammel)

The Sunday Poem

Miles Davis "'Round About Midnight" (1957/Columbia Records)
“You Never Forget Your First” – by Brian Kates

Click here to read previous editions of The Sunday Poem

Poetry

Proceeding From Behind: A collection of poems grounded in the rhythmic, relating to the remarkable, by Terrance Underwood...A relaxed, familiar comfort emerges from the poet Terrance Underwood’s language of intellectual acuity, wit, and space – a feeling similar to one gets while listening to Monk, or Jamal, or Miles. I have long wanted to share his gifts as a poet on an expanded platform, and this 33-poem collection – woven among his audio readings, music he considers significant to his story, and brief personal comments – fulfills my desire to do so.

Interview

The Marvelettes/via Wikimedia Commons
Interview with Laura Flam and Emily Sieu Liebowitz, authors of But Will You Love Me Tomorrow?: An Oral History of the 60’s Girl Groups...Little is known of the lives and challenges many of the young Black women who made up the Girl Groups of the ‘60’s faced while performing during an era rife with racism, sexism, and music industry corruption. The authors discuss their book’s mission to provide the artists an opportunity to voice their experiences so crucial to the evolution of popular music.

Calling All Poets!

News about a Jerry Jazz Musician printed jazz poetry anthology, and information about submitting your poetry for consideration

Short Fiction

pickpik.com
Short Fiction Contest-winning story #65 — “Ballad” by Lúcia Leão...The author’s award-winning story is about the power of connections – between father and child, music and art, and the past, present and future.

Click here to read more short fiction published on Jerry Jazz Musician

Interview

photo of Louis Jordan by William Gottlieb/Library of Congress
Interview with Tad Richards, author of Jazz With a Beat: Small Group Swing, 1940 – 1960...Richards makes the case that small group swing players like Illinois Jacquet, Louis Jordan (pictured) and Big Jay McNeely played a legitimate jazz that was a more pleasing listening experience to the Black community than the bebop of Parker, Dizzy, and Monk. It is a fascinating era, filled with major figures and events, and centered on a rigorous debate that continues to this day – is small group swing “real jazz?”

Playlist

Sonny Rollins' 1957 pianoless trio recording "Way Out West"
“The Pianoless Tradition in Modern Jazz” – a playlist by Bob Hecht...an extensive playlist built around examples of prominent pianoless modern jazz.

Feature

Excerpts from David Rife’s Jazz Fiction: Take Two – (Vol. 1)...A substantial number of novels and stories with jazz music as a component of the story have been published over the years, and the scholar David J. Rife has written short essay/reviews of them.  In this initial edition featuring his story essays/reviews, Rife writes about three novels that explore challenges of the mother/daughter relationship.

Trading Fours with Douglas Cole

The cover of Wayne Shorter's 2018 Blue Note album "Emanon"
Trading Fours, with Douglas Cole, No. 20: “Notes on Genius...This edition of the writer’s poetic interpretations of jazz recordings and film is written in response to the music of Wayne Shorter.

Click here to read previous editions of Trading Fours with Douglas Cole

In Memoriam

Hans Bernhard (Schnobby), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
“Remembering Joe Pass: Versatile Jazz Guitar Virtuoso” – by Kenneth Parsons...On the 30th anniversary of the guitarist Joe Pass’ death, Kenneth Parsons reminds readers of his brilliant career

Book Excerpt

Book excerpt from Jazz with a Beat: Small Group Swing 1940 – 1960, by Tad Richards

Click here to read more book excerpts published on Jerry Jazz Musician

Poetry

painting by Vaino Kunnas
Jazz…in eight poems...A myriad of styles and experiences displayed in eight thoughtful, provocative poems…

Jazz History Quiz #172

photo of Teddy Wilson by William Gottlieb
Teddy Wilson once said this about a fellow jazz pianist:

“That man had the most phenomenal musical gifts I’ve ever heard. He was miraculous. It’s like someone hitting a home run every time he picks up a bat. We became such fast friends that I was allowed to interrupt him anytime he was playing at the house parties in Toledo we used to make every night. When I asked him, he would stop and replay a passage very slowly, showing me the fingering on some of those runs of his. You just couldn’t figure them out by ear at the tempo he played them.”

Who is the pianist he is describing?

Community

photo via Picryl.com
.“Community Bookshelf, #2"...a twice-yearly space where writers who have been published on Jerry Jazz Musician can share news about their recently authored books. This edition includes information about books published within the last six months or so…

Contributing Writers

Click the image to view the writers, poets and artists whose work has been published on Jerry Jazz Musician, and find links to their work

Coming Soon

A new collection of jazz poetry; a collection of jazz haiku; a new Jazz History Quiz; short fiction; poetry; photography; interviews; playlists; and lots more in the works...

Interview Archive

Eubie Blake
Click to view the complete 22 year archive of Jerry Jazz Musician interviews, including those recently published with Richard Carlin and Ken Bloom on Eubie Blake (pictured); Richard Brent Turner on jazz and Islam; Alyn Shipton on the art of jazz; Shawn Levy on the original queens of standup comedy; Travis Atria on the expatriate trumpeter Arthur Briggs; Kitt Shapiro on her life with her mother, Eartha Kitt; Will Friedwald on Nat King Cole; Wayne Enstice on the drummer Dottie Dodgion; the drummer Joe La Barbera on Bill Evans; Philip Clark on Dave Brubeck; Nicholas Buccola on James Baldwin and William F. Buckley; Ricky Riccardi on Louis Armstrong; Dan Morgenstern and Christian Sands on Erroll Garner; Maria Golia on Ornette Coleman.

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