Making Dinner, I Hear Rostropovich on the Radio

Zest of lemons fills the air, and on the radio,
yearning notes from the throat of a cello.

Exactly how much salt or spice to throw in?
Without measurement, the senses tend to open wider.

Viola, violin, strings from the orchestra fill out
undertones in the andante part of the Rococo Variations:

this is Tchaikovsky in the arms of Rostropovich, or
so my daughter tells me. Slow as a waltz— and suddenly I

realize this might be the music I’d like played at my funeral.
Quelle alternative? I don’t know, as I wasn’t really

pondering the matter. Just something in the phrasing,
or the way the quietly contemplative cadenzas make me feel

none of the sorrowful hysteria sometimes induced by
music that lobs the racquetball of the soul around in its cage,

little bird reminded of the wilderness that bred it.
Kindness after long difficulty is what I hear, perhaps. Or

just a simple turn, a few steps around the room, notes that burgeon
into the fullness of their theme. I don’t know much more.

How have I started with lemons and garlic—
grease quietly sputtering under the layer of

fricasseed chicken breasts in a pan on the stove— then
ended up thinking of music by which to exit?

Don’t read more into this than there is.
Clouds look lovely outside the prismatic window,

bunched and fleecy as pulled wool. I’m here and not
about to go anywhere just yet; I love the color yellow.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

Series Navigation← Tarot: False SpringField Notes →

Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What is Left of Wings, I Ask (2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.

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