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Lips that kiss

for Norman Baker
by Kevin T. McEneaney
Tue Oct 10th, 2017

Clarinet, network of clear notes,

most erotic of instruments

delineating the spectrum of love:

ardent, difficult, exultant.

 

A slender, single “beating” reed

delivers a smooth, creamy sound

where crescendo and diminuendo

outdo other wind instruments.

 

Look how modestly the clarinet hides

in an orchestral throng!

Its notes come from down below

to arrive, amid stops, to the ear

 

with sensory bursts like flowers

exploding in air, its petals landing

in your surprised  lap, as if to say:

“That’s a high or low you didn’t expect.”

 

Those who loved you most:

Mozart, Beethoven, Rimsky-Korsakov,

Brahms, Strauss, Prokofiev, Debussy,

Wagner, Weber, Poulenc, Stravinsky.

 

Never middling you are either

sensually low or spiritually high.

While you might be manic-depressive,

you deliver emphatic mood clothed in blue.