Saturday, 12 January 2013

Story of The Blues

Many years ago, a music-student, knowing that I was a writer, asked me to compose a libretto for him to set to music. He wanted something reflective, thoughtful, slow-moving but eclectic enough in style for him to flex his various musical muscles. After many conversations, and based on a close friendship that formed between us, I came up with a sequence of twelve lyrics, pretentiously described as ‘cantos,’ exploring a wealth of associations with the word ‘blue.’

Lacking inspiration for this year’s bloggery, I have decided to post these ‘twelve tones of blue’ on the 12th day of every month. Only last night, I was talking with some vinyl enthusiasts about the pure beauty of hearing Joni Mitchell’s masterpiece, ‘Blue’ played on a record player. This experience is what lies beneath the first poem in my sequence.

Twelve Tones of Blue

Canto I

The beginnings of song, birth-pangs, procreation; a scream of life.

Blue. Pure note: blue;

the silent, single pin defines

the pang of our sad tattoo:

a baby screams,

its face resumes its hue.