I plan to put a record on
in my basement tonight after the sunlight fades.
Lady Soul, which came to me while
my fingers sifted through crates of cardboard,
the scent of earth and oil hanging
on my shirtsleeves. Behind the counter
a grizzled traveler sorted seventy-eights.
Each corner is a crinkled knuckle of
blue and faded white and I will
slide the black wax back into my palm,
with its label like the dusk against night
and the silvery shimmering circles
blinking bright in my eyes.
Ah, and the warm crisp crackle that will
fill the room like strong ale!
Tender tasks of care draw my child, and as I
lift my finger away from the needle she may
appear at my waist with eyes of questions and
curiosity (or maybe mischief).
Perhaps we will dance with the manners of
four-year-olds, stuttering limbs and wavering jabs,
and I will try to teach her to love all the ways
her little body moves in this world –
with a touch more joy, I pray,
than I have loved my own body.
There are only five songs to the side and then
the little one will tire. I will be left with the sound,
but before all this – before the grooves run out and
the stylus scrapes the sticker with thickening
stillness – before the dark sparkling slows to
a stop – before the pops of full-bodied
analogue dwindle – before the imperfect
wows and flutters smooth away to space –
I have this record to play.