Albert in the Cellar

Albert in the Cellar

by Steve Koenig
© 1998 by Steven H. Koenig

spirits dance arabesques
they take partners
they take solos - freestyle
whoooshing - oooooooo
drizzling wet sand into formations
the spirits enter and build structure
there are no children
there are no adults
just spirits dancing free
scattering sand

the wizard knows
the answer is in your shoes
you already have it
find your own movement
that takes you home

ghosts (variation)
at home we have a party
tentatively take hands
renew old friendships
shuffle nervously
it's not really home again
the spirits confound you
you thought you had it
these shoes are not comfortable
but you have to get to the party
and maybe these will feel all right
after all

sweet variation
the spirits reveal themselves
they drum on logs
they encourage your footsteps
your moans become their moans
you bark to keep them at bay
the mud under your feet
eases the journey
you're unaware of anything but stones
and the light through the trees
the spirits sing along with the birds

ghost (another variation)
you're unsure if that song is yours
is the ghostly tune from your own throat/
your own head
in what way is the forest enchanted?
the dance alters the jaunt clumsy
for the first time you really listen
to what the ghosts have to say.

the truth is marching on
you hear the rhythm in the tune
it's a march that will bring you home
this is the truth
this is a dance
the only way you will walk
others will join you
others will leave you
the ghosts are always there

no head
all of a sudden you feel you have no head
light as air
the song is your own
the ghosts haven't guided you
but you're not talking in tongues
this is your language
this is your dialect
the universal translator
the birds hear and listen
the ghosts hear and listen
so do the stones in your shoes

sweet variation 2
and now you understand yourself
singing your song
your bitter
your sweet
your shouting it out loud
i have beauty
this is my song
you will find your own
but this is
my song

it is bitter sweet
things are not the same
you want to take control
explore the environment
see what is safe
you come your way
unsure if you'll make it
as you walk by
and tread the day
and cradle the dry leaves

ghosts (variation 2)
as you walk your feet get a rhythm
a jaunt takes over
the thin trees are pulled back
by the ghosts who inhabit your home
they ease your path
despite the pebbles
your toes feel
you keep walking

for Albert Ayler
July 12, 1998
to be read while listening
to the complete Cellar Café concert of Albert Ayler, 1964.

C o m m e n t s

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