Her fingers drum on the steering wheel during a red light,
a trembling chaos of precision and subtlety underneath.
I'm at the Blue Note, or at Casa Del Jazz in Rome.
I'm in a Subaru. This is going on right next to me and nobody knows.
I am listening with my body to the percussion
of her hands, flutterthumping. She is oblivious
to how this thrills me. I sit in the passenger seat
and open my legs a little to the sound of it.
It used to piss me off how great she is. What was she doing here,
driving her mom to CVS, cleaning her toilet? Why wasn't she touring
in Tokyo, grabbing a bite with Joni Mitchell's side men,
checking with her tour manager about where they go after Paris?
There are a thousand answers. There are no answers.
But when I sit across the table from her, or we're stuck in traffic,
the rhythms electrify her fingers like children spilling
through the doors at recess, full on and ferocious.
The beat bumps break dance into the dashboard and up my thighs,
and I let the conversation coast, hold my breath, my ears recording,
hoping nothing breaks the spell and frightens her feral fingers away.
It's a gift from her and only her, for me and only me.
And nobody knows--not even her.
Share This Poem