Three poems…by Michael L. Newell

May 2nd, 2021

.

.

“For a Moment,” by Bob Hecht

 

.

.

There You Are Again

Wind ransacks trees and bushes
up and down a hillside,
its voice a deep-throated moan
reflecting all mankind’s sorrow that betides,

such grief as resides
in cello or oboe,
abandoned child
or grieving widow;

ah, to know a song to sing
that brings peace to all things,
chant it into a suffering world
so majestic hope might be unfurled;

although in truth I would gladly accept
any comfort, no matter how inept.

.

___

.
Alone On A Night Street

Sailing through a midnight sky,
entangled in pine branches,
a golden full moon graces
the night with a beauty

comparable to a Bill Evans
or Duke Ellington solo,
nothing needed to expand
the floating vision;

the world is subtle, and repays
serious contemplation,
a lovely peace stripped
of life’s angst and anger;

the simple act of breathing
in and out is a form of prayer.

.

___

.

Privacy At Last

The stubborn ringing of the doorbell:
it can be no one I know as no one I know
knows where I live,
but the sound persists; it grows louder
like a swarm of angry hornets,

and the phone joins in, as though
it were a referee calling a foul
on my failure to act, to speak, to open
the door to whoever thinks I owe them
my time, my energy, my thought,

my tolerance for whatever they bring.
At last silence, and I return to my late
breakfast which is now cold, less inviting
than I was to whatever strangers were
demanding my attention at door and on phone.

I lean back in my chair, headsets in place so no one
will know of my presence and slip into dream
listening to the pianistic elegance of Duke Ellington,
a most welcome stranger who brings beauty minus
the demands of anything other than quiet pleasure.

.

.

___

.

.

Michael L. Newell is a poet who currently lives in Florida. He has published 17 books and chapbooks over the last 29 years. His most recent books are Traveling without Compass or Map (Bellowing Ark Press), Meditation of an Old Man Standing on a Bridge (Bellowing Ark Press), Wandering (Cyberwit.Net), and Each Step a Discovery (Cyberwit.Net). He is a retired English/Theatre teacher who has lived in 13 of the United States, and 13 countries on five continents outside the United States.

.

.

Bob Hecht is a resident of Portland, Oregon, and a frequent contributor to Jerry Jazz Musician.  A selection of his photography can be found at his website by clicking here.

.

.

Listen to a 1953 recording of Duke Ellington playing “All Too Soon,” with Butch Ballard and drums and Wendell Marshall on bass.

 

.

.

.

Share this:

2 comments on “Three poems…by Michael L. Newell”

  1. Hi Michael: I enjoyed these three poems very much. The first poem, “There You Are Again,”
    seemed to work as an adapted Shakespearean sonnet, especially with the rimed couplet
    at the end, with the 13th and 14th lines. I was affected by the tone of the lines, “Such grief
    as resides, in cello or oboe.” All three poems have a very nice tone and lyric quality. All three
    have lines that will stay in my memory. Best Wishes, Alan Yount.

  2. It’s easy to overlook the free-form sonnet of Michael’s first poem; a sort of classic meets modern times. In the second poem, “the world is subtle, and repays” is such a haunting line… if a picture paints 1,000 words, Michael’s line paints 1,000 images and ways to be understood. Michael wraps up his trilogy of poems by sharing with us his curmudegeonly self… or at least one of the many personae who appear in his poems.

    Thanks you for sharing once again your wisdom, insight, and writing skills –
    Dan

Comment on this article:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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

photo via RawPixel
"23 Poets remember their father…"

This space on Sunday is generally reserved for a single poet to read one of their works, but this week’s issue -Father’s Day – features 23 poets who weigh in on the complexity of their relationship with their father, revealing love, warmth, regret, sorrow – and in many cases a strong connection to a common love of music.

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.

Book Excerpt

An excerpt from Emily Jon Tobias’ MONARCH: Stories, and a reflection on our friendship

Art

photo of Archie Shepp by Giovanni Piesco
The Photographs of Giovanni Piesco: Archie Shepp...photos of the legendary saxophonist (and his rhythm section for the evening), taken at Amsterdam's Bimhuis on May 13, 2001.

Poetry

The cover to Joni Mitchell's 1976 album Hejira [Asylum]; photo by Norman Seeff
“Fort Macleod, Alberta, Canada” – a poem (for Joni Mitchell) by Juan Mobili

Click here to read more poetry published in Jerry Jazz Musician

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.

Site Archive