To the Hawk — Flying
Old Hawk, I can’t stand this earth,
I’m gonna FLY!
Fly away! Burn a hole in the stratosphere, skewer the sun!
I bet your rarefied vittles, old Hawk,
I’m gonna do it soon.
Angels, you keep out of it.
Keep over there.
Keep off the lawn, and off the sky.
This is my show now,
and no one showing me how.
Anyway, never did like your sometime piety,
though underneath it, you’re OK.
Fly, fly! Fly with me! Me’n the old Hawk there.
Drum roll in our ears, divinely supercharged,
we shoot past the moon, past Jupiter, ‘n him ‘n her,
and disappear in FLAME.
Want to come? Come on, come on.
Sky’s big enough; space behind; and —
wanna come with us — beyond THAT?
There’s plenty….plenty more, and plenty less,
and nothing there to make a mess.
I hear your symphony, old thing;
I’d fly for you, but glory be,
can’t stand it down here anyhow — much —
why not be free.
I’m gonna dive like a dervish over the galaxies,
swallow them down on the way —
(will you take an aperitif?) —
waving my crazy wings,
and I may catch fire —
going so fast, y’know —
but it’ll all work out in the end,
for it will end.
Look how my wings got bloodied,
slicing off those skyscraper tops. Ah, drat.
Play me a song and I’ll forget.
I’ll skim the flowers off the fields of space
and bring ‘em to you, old Hawk.
You got there first; is your lodging well-appointed?
Dust-free? Seraphs soaring, never boring?
Enough birds that change to buttercups and bats,
glowing mountains, the oceanic tempo, drumroar,
and an endless cosmic shimmering shore,
mystic, healing jazz — and more?
and no kitchenware?
I’ve no desires to spare.
They’re spent, burnt out;
just enough to get me this far, down here; no farther.
I’m coming up.
Note: Dedicated to Coleman Hawkins, “the Hawk,” an old friend, and one of the world’s greatest jazz saxophone players. The Hawk flew this earthly coop some decades ago.