remembering edward kennedy
a duke, from latin dux, is nobly born,
of highest rank & rules his own demesne.
& edward k. so ruled a realm of horn
& reed & voice; of improvised refrain,
perambulating bass & lofty drum --
the big band –- unforgiving crucible
of harmony, addiction & then some.
an alchemist, his music fluxed them all;
reduced the mystery of being black
to fresh new amalgams of brass & wind
& mellow tones. he launched an air attack,
a thaumaturgic grace, to charm & fend
off anomie; his music helped explain
the existential paradox of pain.
©Joseph McNair; 2008