Thursday, January 12, 2017

Seventh Poem (You’re a Billie Holiday song)

Wearing new boxers and socks.
Feel like $798.12.
The first time I heard Billie Holiday I knew I had uncovered something extraordinary.
Her tortured, aching voice alleviated stress by making me feel like I had never existed.

You open me up to possibilities I never believed possible.
Do you remember when we hung out in the confessional?
How you tricked me into kissing you and how your mouth tasted of sacramental wine.
You told me it wasn’t your first time, but I figured because it was mine you could vicariously live through me as we lowered our guards and finally experienced freedom.

I’ll never understand those who say in her later years she wasn’t as powerful a singer because for me it’s in those later years when her weathered and worn instrument truly outshines the mediocrity of everyday living and challenges us to face what we’ll never be able to resolve in this one cataclysmic lifetime.
There are blues singers and then there are singers that are blue. In my estimation Billie Holiday was neither one and at the same time a whole helluva lot of both. The popular songs of the day were just kindling to her furnace pipes as she ate human experience like it was going out of style and sprayed fire like a fire breathing hearse driver.
With you I’ll always wear my heart on my sleeve because you have proved beyond the shadow of any doubt I’m a better man when carving out these poems for you as I imagine us together listening to Lady Day and cuddling like our lives depended on it.

Charles Cicirella

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