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Andrew Johnston

for Rostropovich

A red ribbon
in the region of the second clarinet

a forest of people a sudden clearing
a flashback
a backlash—

replaces the mouthpiece, the reed,
is ready for the cellist—

a body between rivers
in the region of the reeds

another, and another

distant cloud with a beard of rain

oil and reeds
Babylonian dust

but no running water
and the living, silent

the big man blew
through this man
and this man

looking for a pure note—

a ribbon of red
a marvelous acoustic—
an otherwise empty hall—

the second clarinet
pulls a ribbon through—

a rustle, as of reeds
giving in

to the slightest wind.


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© Copyright 2008 Andrew Johnston & Trout.