September 2020
In memory of my friend Di, who loved jazz

They find
socially distant spots
among gone-over hollyhocks,
straggly white roses,
fragile pink wood-anemones,
tune up, launch into
‘Ice-cream’, their
opening number.

Trumpet, clarinet,
sax, trombone, bass,
rhythm from a washboard.
An audience gathers
in the road, curious,
appreciative, generous
with applause. A few
sit to listen.

Di would have
loved it. When she
became too ill
to join us, I used
to phone, let her
listen to the band’s
rehearsals. This afternoon
I feel her death

with every beat.