Whither music?
And where from?

Listen: I have fallen off a fading fanfare a few times too many.

Often, hot-jazz musicians hopped up on pomp and pizzazz drag me by my ear whenever their cadence spills into a doo-wop two-step
and I find myself toe-tapping against my will.

How now, rhythm?
Have you stolen my body from me?

I forgot the sound of your fury:
the fleet-footed fandangos and soft, silky tangos
which fasten my feet to the floor.

Whether I’m rich or poor, you move my mind from within with no engine.
I can speak without words.
I understand without knowing.
I feel beyond mere being.

It takes me back to when I first felt blessed to hear my heart hearken hard against my chest, when I knew that this drum would become the meter of all this strife.
That in my core, a metronome would measure and mete out my life.

But when I grew up, my brain began to scan and train itself to be
a kick-ass pattern recognition machine.

And my dreams became unseemly, tainted by hormones raging.

Amid all the acclimation of aging:
the acne, the awkward locker room showers,
the eternal hour of unrequited love,
my heartbeat became a background pulse in the orchestra of my culmination.
My heart a faint ticking time-bomb dutifully noting the beats per minute.

For what it’s worth, I’ll listen to the tenor and timbre of my body,
until the drone reminds me of my birth and the warmth of the womb.
I know I first timed my tempo to my Mother’s measured meter.
Ba-doum. Ba-doum.
And my heart did match her tune.

In sum, music precedes me from before the time that I begun.
And when I go, and my time here is all done,
whither music?
and where from?

a cappella

Dedicated to my Mother