The pub singer

In a tight little pub,

in a tight little corner,

she sang with her

band of minstrel men.


And her eyes shot light,

and her voice echoed

among the scattered

patrons and half-drunk drinks.


She sang the usual standards

with a generous topping

of her smile and passion,

hiding the fragile little  girl beneath.


Friends passed as she sang

and kissed her cheek

knowingly, warmly

amid the flow of an old familiar tune.


And her eyes, attended by smiles,

glanced lovingly around her band

as if they were her possessions,

or the toys from her little girl’s room.


Family, friends, lovers,

and those who came just to come,

heard not the usual empty verses

but notes loaded with synergy.


The song caressed and wooed

in its living among the notes

and the beats and its encounter

with clashing glasses and flowing patrons.


One could hear the distant

clap of rapid drunken hands

from a customer who knows her

but doesn’t know her.


How I envied her familiarity,

her ease in and among

these people of the night

who passionately soaked in the moment.


She seemed not worried at all

about the fragility of life

in her living it truthfully now,

and finding the sacred in this moment.


She was lost in the convocation

of being there with others (for others)

as a focus for their escape,

not caring what the next note might bring.


But for me the music will end

and the pleasure will be gone

with the last desperate note

that falls in the half-empty bar.


And the cold street will, once again,

take all our steps of departing,

as the band packs away its chords

and we enter the moonlight of the afterglow.