Bio Note: I have been writing most of my life and began publishing in the late 1950s. In my checkered career I have corrupted youth at various colleges and universities with time out for a stint as Executive Director of a community arts council. At eighty five I am twice retired, live in a Saint Louis brick house a short distance from the Mississippi river and have survived various adventures with stroke and heart failure. My publication credits include The Sewanee Review, a recent spread in Litbreak Magazine and a featured poem in Better than Starbucks.
Winter Cyclone Haiku
—December 23, 2022 Four o’clock and it’s freezing cold outside today five degrees will be the overnight high with wind chill thirty below. So nice to be warm and dry inside here hope the city’s street people survive the deep freeze. A class among us— we call them the unhoused, not because we are kind but because our soft spot for the billionaire class is vaguely disturbed that some might resist offer of warmth on a night like this one coming.
His family jokingly suggested he might play his fiddle outside the Essex on the loop one evening returning from dinner in the pleasant haze of their love. He took them up on it, young eight-year-old, call him Johnny, Johnny Generic for a boy small enough to play his three-quarter size cello sitting outside next morning in the early chill, warming up his fingers with the prelude to Bach’s first unaccompanied suite for the instrument, in his hands seeming full-size, case open in front of him already filling with passersby’s pocket change he had declared he’d spend to buy video games; and if his periwigged master had been able to hear over the hoot of his celestial diapason, perhaps he would have smiled at yet one more Johnny to queue up and add to the ten survived— but hey, who’s counting?
©2023 Julian O. Long
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