for clora bryant
rise up, rise up,
&, as the trumpet blowing
chases the dreams of men...
u played so sweet yr dad broke down & cried;
his texas girl could never be the same.
a lady with a trumpet u became
against all odds & practice true & tried.
who knew what fickle deities betide,
or how a colored girl would earn her fame.
that u might play with bird or diz, declaim
the feminine & change the tide
or break thru gender barriers to play
with men, exert yr forceful horn on jazz,
embrace & improvise on change --
no real surprise just history today!
a light beneath a bushel? no. in jazz
a bebop lighthouse beacon & phalange!
© Joseph McNair;2010