The Ancient Modern
It’s a Lifelong Singalong, If You Let It Be / Joshua Alan Sturgill
Duran Duran says I won’t cry
for yesterday. Roxette says hello,
you fool, I love you. Matthew Wilder
says nothing will break my stride.
They tell me there’s an ordinary world, and
a joy ride, and nothing to slow me down.
Every now and every again, a diamond
finds its way to my ear. And I laugh
at what floats by and at what remains
—and at what, years later, still signifies
that cafe, those kisses, those cigarettes.
I suppose it’s true that some poetry
is advice plus music—honest jargon
coated in a catchy tune. The Rainmakers
misquote Moses as saying, let my people
go-go. I sang along to Nyro for years
without acknowledging her genius.
That cafe, that cold, cold air, that face
hiding everywhere intangible, outliving
the food and wine. Willie Nelson
gathers a stardust bouquet, and I listen
all night to his nylon strings, and to
the Nylons in the jungle. I sing nothing
from nothing with Billy. And something
so right with Paul. Dancing Alone.
Dancing in the Moonlight. Moondance.
Dancing in the Dark. I wake
with a tune on my tongue. How strange
that cafe, those stories, that long ride home.
Isn’t life strange, moody and blue?
Love is a stranger in an open car.
People are strange. But as I try
to make my way, I will learn to see
with a detached patience, I’m a believer
in that eye in the sky, in that
old-fashioned love song. That stoned
soul picnic. That broken glass. I’m
a daydream believer
with a rainbow