A poem by Ken McKeon

Florence Sur Les Champs-Élysées

It’s all on or nothing, and that last completely
Nails you down, planks you under-lid, that,
The last door, and it’s closed, a no say,

But if you can still move, slow down
To a wait-a-while, and then say if you can say
Whatever it is you just might have to say.

Be that way.
Darkening realm of

Silence, light cloud cover, dim green foliage
And singularly long held breath blowing out
Of a stunning note, trumpeted

Brassy held gemstone play of hi there
And just what gives this day?

Hear how my listening
Becomes what you have to say.

So shall I stay?
Do and do, stay and dance,
Step as you will, the play goes

On, open up, the dawn
Is everywhere, wrestling roll aways,
Soft whine and snarl of

I could really use a lift to get back
To myself, are you going my way?
Why yes I am,

Come in and ride along then.
Really? Truly.

Of course then. Stepping out
Into the silence,

The settled always openness of everywhere,
Take my hand if you wish

As I do, and in my heart the blues
Are down and joyful, and the

Children nestle up in warm beds,
And the sirens signal late night

Violence maybe somewhere in this town,
And the stillness of silent shops,

Cracks open, and we walk together
As comfortably as armchairs are

At end of day, and bouquets
Realign themselves tastefully

On the few tables left in the room,
And folks find themselves as welcome

As evening is when the shift ends,
And they get up to wander out,

Slight breeze on cheeks, forehead,
Awakening time,

To be with each other, love,
The guide and impulse of the heart,

I’ll be home soon, and I
Will wait for you.

And they part only to find
Themselves together again.

More sooner than later,
Now that’s a smile,

And following its warmth on out, an embrace
And a kiss and a being together again.

(Ken shared that “The title comes from a Miles Davis cut”)

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