IN THE SMALL HOURS
Blue diaphane, tobacco smoke
Serpentine on wet film
and wood glaze,
Mutes chrome, wreathes velvet drapes,
Dims the cave of mirrors. Ghost fingers
Comb seaweed hair,
stroke acquamarine veins
Of marooned mariners, captives
Of Circe's sultry notes. The barman
Dispenses igneous potions
Somnabulist, the band plays on.
Cocktail mixer, silvery fish
Dances for limpet clients.
Applause is steeped
Tangled in webs of lovers' whispers
And artful eyelash of the androgynous.
The hovering notes caress
Mellowed deep indigo still they play.
Departures linger. Absences do not
Deplete the tavern. They
hang over the haze
As exhalations from receded shores. Soon,
Night repossesses the silence, but till dawn
hold sway, smoky
Epiphanies, possessive of the hours.
This music's plaint forgives, redeems
The deafness of
the world. Night turns
Homewards, sheathed in notes of solace, pleats
The broken silence of the heart.