Under the El by Michele Belluomini

Under the El by Michele Belluomini

Under the El
there he is again
the diabetic saxophone player
leg in a cast   his foot cut off
playing jazz-blues at 11am
on a humid June morning
his music evokes the night:
blare of a neon sign stuttering
in darkness
a run of notes in the upper register recalls
voices riffing
from an open door —
men and women laughing     
   happy to be alive
a sudden descent into a minor key
low notes blister the air  — growl
of an argument whirls    reverberates
tension builds    music arching like a cat
ready to pounce:  hear the shouts
feel the shoves    a low snarl
music swirls     filled with disgust  
with a shake of the head   
shrug of a shoulder
friendship walks out the door
blue notes scrape air
lonely footsteps on rain-soaked pavement
oh how he plays
I miss the train   I miss two more
only when he stops
am I released from the spell

Michele Belluomin’s poetry has been published in American Poetry, Philadelphia Poets, Beltway, The Mad Poets Review, The Fox Chase Review, Schuylkill Valley Journal, and Apiary Online, among others. Poems have also appeared in various Poetry Ink anthologies and the anthology, COMMONWEALTH: Poets on Pennsylvania.  Crazy Mary and Others, won the 2004 Plan B Press chapbook competition.  Her most recent volume of poetry is Signposts for Sleepwalkers, also published by Plan B Press (Alexandria, VA).  She works as Adjunct Library Faculty at Community College of Philadelphia.