Summer 1978 (a poem)

Listening to Steely Dan’s Aja

The LP drops onto the turntable from atop the spindle
the other five discs stay neatly in place

The first few notes flow forth from the speakers
it’s summer, and in my mind I’m in California
on a beach somewhere
watching beautiful people play in the surf
from the shade of my umbrella
with a cool drink on the table beside me

I still don’t know what a banyon tree is
but I can almost imagine the music Donald Fagen is listening to
as the yellow, orange, and red of the label blurs into discrete stripes
and the sunlight streams in through my bedroom window
creating shadows on the wall
with a cool drink on the table beside me

Yes, Joe, life has been good
and it’s almost an all-Asylum afternoon
with only the Rumors coming out of Burbank
breaking up the blue skies and their fluffy clouds
while I wait for the werewolves of London
hanging out at night time in the switching yard

I picture Linda hastening down the wind
the governor not far behind
as the sun sets somewhere beyond the trees
My mother calls me downstairs
it’s time to take out the garbage
We’re having hamburger again tonight…

(20 August 2016)

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