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[04] Spiritual E-mail
Song Of Praise
Saturday, 14 January 2006 07:58
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spiritual 

for linda jones


what is jazz, but spirituals
played thru saxophones
& trombones,

spirit voices
thru metal tubings
& the terrible repetition

of the formal premise, viz.
trance-like
at its best, or boring

when the spirit doth not move,
oh what is blues
but spirituals with a line

removed,
that is structurally,
& in content just a prayer

to the gods of daily life,
to ask the blessing
that the body of another

may lay warm in the bed
beside you at night, and the rent
be paid, and a meal

on the table, with the sheriff
far away
from the scene of the crime -- oh

what is jazz but the registration
of the human personality
in relation to the spiritual,

stripped of literal meaning
but full of sound & portent,
direct as the voice of the gods



detroit
september 15, 1985



from Song of Praise: Homage to John Coltrane


3.1.695
 
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