It was more than I'd expected,
far more than I could have hoped.
In the dark, 45 minutes east to Detroit.
As the radio stations change we change
yodeling with the Cranberries one minute
articulating every sound from Sisqo the next.
After several wrong turns we make the right ones
arriving at a jazz club called Cliff Bells.
Inside, candle-lit tables and curling smoke.
On the way to the bathroom I pass Yukimi
and again on the way to the heart of the bar.
She smiles and I smile and I
hold my breath.
Friends sit down calmly but I sit like a child,
Restless. I pulse to the work of the DJ
to contain my soul before the band plays
and I can let go. Friends get drinks
I opt for water, my dry lips with so many words
and wishes behind them.
It starts as a familiar hum, the opening
to "A New." We move closer, close enough to touch
and in between stares I try to close my eyes a little
but they flutter with electricity
Soon it takes over my shoulders and hips and I
sway in my seat.
I neatly fold my inhibitions and set them aside
beside my blue pumps which I have decided to abandon.
I dance until my hair falls down, untamed curls
extending from my neon yellow soul. I dance
the way I dance in the bathroom when no one sees.
Little Dragon must not leave. The drums are a beating
heart and the keyboard is a time machine running in
both directions. Bass guitar, a full moon mixed with
the warm honey voice of an oracle.
We scream until they turn around again, for
"Swimming" and "Constant Surprises" and "Twice."
After the show I waste no time, jumping on the stage
short-cutting my way to where Yukimi and Erik stand
selling T-shirts and albums. I walk up to Kimi
who looks at me with eyes fixed in thought.
"Are you...?" and "Yeah!" are the only necessary words
and soon she enthusiastically embraces me.
Erik does the same, and I meet Fredrik and Hakan.
All have seen my homemade video for "Blinking Pigs"
and love it, insisting that I take a shirt and CD.
They won't let me pay for merchandise that pays bills
The video is enough, they say. Will you make another?
I have autographs and photos and moments and words
and music between my ears and in my veins.
I am alive with art, a sweet taste on my tongue.