Can’t Find the Words

After Swing, by Kwame Alexander and Mary Rand Hess.

The nation's pulse
can be found in
Charles Mingus's fingers
walking on an upright bass.

There's so much I want to
say to you,
so much I can't
find words for.

Have you ever heard Coltrane
run up and down a scale,
then deconstruct every rule
you thought you knew?

You're right in front of me,
but I can't reach you–
my hands trapped in my pockets,
my throat dry as August sun.