The Clarinet

First published in Mosaic #28, 1988, page 82 (University of California, Riverside). Also published in Sand Hill Review #4, Spring 2003, page 39.

 

A Londoner with

hatovercoatclarinet

plays amiable

songstunesmelodies

outside

the Royal Festival,

command performance

inside.

His hatovercoatclarinet

case

are worn,

and the tired case lies

open

where naked

reedspenniespounds

rest.

The music

                     floats

sweetly

across the Thames

played

through thin

woolgloveswithoutfingers

and when the concert

ends

bowlersgownsducktails

waltz like the river by

to the sound

of a dreamy

clarinet.