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Jazz Girl This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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She, I have decided, is like jazz.
Not big band, not Glenn Miller's brassy swing
or blasting trumpets.
Cool jazz, smoky quiet New Orleans jazz,
born from boredom and a need for variety.

Her face is a “Gloomy Saturday,”
Her hands “My Funny Valentine,”
Her legs “God Bless the Child”
(Who's got his own, who's got his own,
and doesn't that sound perfect for my ever-independent girl?)

Her smile comes quick like Ella and Cole Porter,
Fast and complicated lyrics to “You're the Top,”
even as she murmurs hello;
her tears come soft and slow like Ms. Kitt wishing
to be Evil.

She moves with the grace of Norah Jones' voice,
breathes like “Feeling Good,”
and sleeps like Sinnerman live,
all fits and starts and silky-calm smug uncertainty.

I wonder what it would be like
to hum these notes into her shoulder,
see if, even in her sleep,
she can feel the vibration, free of
conscious embarrassment.

I want to listen to the deep drumbeat
of her dedicated heart,
tap the accompanying snares
on the taut, tender skin of her thigh.
Hear the melody of brightly rushing blood
in the arches of ticklish feet,
the descant of comfortable breath,
of gentle wheezes in familiar lungs.

I want to memorize all of her varied
and impossible rhythms, play them back
in high fidelity and surround-sound, and then,
when I have been filled with
the sound and taste and brightly colored life of
her, I want to dance.

And maybe, someday,
I will find a way to keep her just like jazz,
endless and influential and a constant companion
for all these many, endless days.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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This article has 5 comments. Post your own now!

hopeisnotcrazy This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
today at 11:37 am
I love it. I love how I can hear all the different songs and voices come together as I read. The rhythm is really unusual (in a good way) and it reads like a slam poem, all while managing to be totally not cliche. SO good.
 
beautifulspiritThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 31, 2012 at 2:09 pm
So cool, brilliant--extraordinary. I loved it~
 
AfanenThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jan. 31, 2012 at 6:32 pm
I'm glad you think so! Thank you.
 
redhairCat This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jul. 31, 2011 at 4:42 pm
Oh I like this one! Very good!
 
AfanenThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Aug. 6, 2011 at 7:41 pm
Thank you! Glad to see all the name-dropping didn't mess with it too much.
 
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