A Jazz Poem for Mary Lee

Image found at Mary Lee’s Poetry Site

My friend, Mary Lee Hahn, is retiring and there are a bunch of people writing her poems today. I was thankful to be invited in. Mary Lee and I crossed digital paths years ago, and while our interactions come and go, I still read her poetry via blogs and RSS feeds and I get inspired by her teaching and sharing.

My poem for her came after the title of the jazz classic (Donna Lee) came to mind when I was playing around her name (Mary Lee) in my head. It’s a strange juxtaposition, I suppose, but the way Mary Lee riffs in her poems was the connection I was going for.

Bird probably wrote it
while Miles claimed it
but Donna Lee reached it:

that groove of notes
as sound poems, a skip dash dance
fluttering around the ear

I hear it forever in Mary Lee, too,
in every haiku or couplet;
she’s plundered

a dance dash skip
of rhyme and rhythm,
written wonder over years;

each verse of hers
a riff of hope:
how love overcomes fear

Peace (for a friend),

Tagging #MarvelousMaryLee and #PoemsforMaryLee

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  1. Kevin, beautiful poem today about jazzy Mary Lee. Your jazz sound comes through in your poem. Some of my favorite spots are:
    “in every haiku or couplet;
    she’s plundered”
    “a riff of hope:
    how love overcomes fear”

  2. What a compliment this poem is! I’ll do my best to live up to it…especially that last stanza.

    Eternal thanks, Kevin!

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