4am Zen Sunday Blue

4 a.m. snow blowing like a red-hot Dixieland band 

swirling curling before the bulbous cop helmet

streetlight hanging mid-air on the postal wall.

 

Clarinet rising trumpets hooting

angels of the forgotten night

dancing the sullen decks of heat street boulevard

in ragged half-time boots.

 

Sailor shaking the biting frost

his dragon ship juice burning a hole in the blue neon wind 

Shanghai Paris Beauté door swings open 

flicking dead ice moons.

I smolder like a hot bubble atop the red neon stew

four floors up and out of this world

watching the swirl.

 

Roma kids hiding out for a daybreak hit

got to please shady cat boss with his violin grin

upright man says what gives

gets a big size bite

and the howl goes up.

 

Cervantes said Gypsies were born to be thieves

who did he steal from? 

tonight I’d light a street fire bright

for a carol, a dream, a saraband flight

sad trombone rides in on the pre-dawn wind.

 

4 a.m. same hour I got your message said call me

and I knew we were fresh outta luck brother

that cutlass call piercing my guts.

 

Fate sliced a mean sleight of hand

you weren’t supposed to go Dick Deadeye 

last soul of my family fleet

taken down to the mean devil seas. 

 

Wasn’t an easy ride you and I 

it got better as we stood side by side

facing remains in the graveyard rains.

 

4 a.m. breathless blue light orphan

staring out at a wasted distant shore

snow baked Dixie orchestra New Year’s packed and gone

parlez-moi d’amour tinkling piano

under the nomad twinkling stars. 

Poem Michael D. Amitin,
Photograph Julie Peiffer