we danced out of high school
that summer
into the dormitory
of Northeastern U’s White Hall.
the soundtrack of the summer
was led by “Respect”.
we painted houses in Roxbury–
a student project;
hailing from Simmons and Brandeis and Harvard–
the colleges of Boston
and some from the South;
Dillard & Howard.
a conglomerate of cultures:
the beginnings of Black Power,
SDS and the Weathermen…
turning out a summer of love;
listening to Jimi Hendricks
and the all-pervasive soul offerings
on warm barefoot evenings
on Huntington Ave.
there is no one
like Aretha.
her voice
has surely reached the heavens

the strain and rasp
of a stretching soprano
with a contralto back.
she sang for my time,
for our time–
she crooned and retorted
as we wandered the mazes
of beginnings
to ends…college, marriage
birth and death…
a cycle that has led us to
another time–
a time of turmoil
and reversal;
of treachery
and hope.
and quiet summer nights
unlit by dance and music
or walks on The Fenway.
alone and contemplating
how we got
from there
to here.

Linda Tauhid



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