a birthday poem

For my dear friend Peter…

on this day
I celebrate you; I celebrate us.
I celebrate our families
who are now joint families.
Happy Birthday, Peter!


an american in paris
by any other name
is still gershwin

(even years later, when
seated at a sidewalk cafe
eating warm goat cheese salad
and sipping red wine,
a memory of you pounding out
rhapsody in blue with your red hair
flapping in rhythm while little
varineau wailed on his clarinet
popped into my head–I swear
it’s true.)

and bench seats
crammed full of musicians
still breed a kind of dontmesswithmybandmate familiarity untouched by blood relation.

serendipity brought us together
as strangers and fellow musicians,
but love bound us as friends.