for cassandra wilson
Photo © Gene Martin
for cassandra wilson

an old friend
calls to tell me
"she's abandoned jazz"
- his voice a moaning
delta breeze.

when he's done,
i call miss cleo;
who, fake caribbean patois
assures me there's never been
no desertion in the music's
fifth house,
or something like that.

i swear i hear the
infidel in question's
version of james taylor's
"only a dream in rio"
in the background,
along with tarot cards
shuffling like a great
tap dancer.

my dear myopic friend,
evolution has always been
a band book with countless chapters.

how could charlie parker
quote stravinsky,
if the music did not
check out everything?

reuben jackson
5/2002 (copyright ©)

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