Jazz Night at the Museum

by Leonore Hildebrandt

For the modernist, an egg shattered in the street.
     A heart?  Straggling notes court the monkey tree.
          “It may take sixty years until the bamboo

finally blooms,” you say, “and then the whole plant dies.”
     The dimly lit blues ballad murmurs intimacies:
          sea lavender in gilded frames.

A break, and the man in the vintage hat
     works the crowd: a trumpeter from Moscow!
          Three horns their fictions prolifically bounding up

grand stairs and corridors, to the landscapes
     the field rubble after winter, a sky over clouding
          to rosy bathers, nudes draped on luscious cloth.

Outside, taxis.  We circumvent downtown’s clusters,
     its ravines and cliffs funneling a harsher wind
          installations in a troubled key.