Keeping in Step

One more dream – and may it prove
the last of its kind to haunt me –
where with a split-reed squawk
I join a marching band
towards the graveyard. My bent back
leans earthwards, and notes
no longer rise to a perfect pitch.

At least I keep in step. Soon
we shall play The Saints, my restless feet
Bojangling, the big drum’s beat
my heart’s defiance. Not yet, Mr Bones,
not yet. Let all be carnival,
death’s dream deferred, and at this point,
the jazz gods willing, I shall wake.