Villanelle Loosely

mingus monk

When Mingus, Monk or Parker swung
You felt the world shift slightly on its axis
Like something in your brain had come un-hung

Jarred off-center by the too late arrival of a bass drum
The tightened looseness of so much dedicated practice ‒
When Mingus, Monk or Parker swung

Those cornerstones to which you’d clung
Became unstable, split by axes ‒
Their centers had been sprung

Kicked along by syncopated hymns still sung
Wherever funky asses
Jived like Monk’s or Parker’s when they swung

And Mingus, not for something bad the guy had done
But that he wouldn’t be upstaged in crassness
Knocked his trombonist’s jaw off-center, a bit un-hung ‒

Who knows but in his manic state that he had fun
Constructing neural pathways for the masses —
Something in their brains had come unhung
Like Mingus, Monk or Parker when they really swung

Jeffrey Clapp

If you have any thoughts on this poem,  Jeffrey Clapp 
would be pleased to hear them.