Poem for Johnny Hartman and Dr. Richard Orange

i would not know

Johnny Hartman

had you not

preached

his splendor

in your lectures

and workshops.

you mesmerized and taught

our freedom

within

the jazz idiom.

the music

has engulfed me

throughout

my life

but your word

made it clearer–

it’s importance

in this struggle

in life itself…

i last saw you,

a meta-

physician,

walking in Greenwich Village

while i sat on

an extended lay-over

to Ghana

and awaited

a Heath Brothers

show.

…and now i am

here

and listening:

‘My One And Only Love’…

while you silently wait

in the place

that we all

will go

from here;

when we

have

finished loving

and living

and have

shed 

all

of

our

earthly

tears…
Linda Tauhid

©7/23