MAKING THINGS RIGHT
For Benny Goodman
When it came to things that mattered
he never compromised –
never forgot his father slaving
away in stockyards, shovelling
lard, coming home in those boots
He kept searching for reasons
for his untimely demise,
why some lives are harder than others.
His parents had risked everything,
this was no time to stop dreaming
of making things right,
stop grieving for all that was lost, endured.
It was the gift of music that set him free.
Refusing to be fenced in by segregation
he created music that knew no boundaries –
almost bringing down the Iron Curtain.
Everyone began to jitterbug to the ritzy rhythms,
swooning women wanted him to do to them
what he did with music:
Sing, Sing, Sing, Life Goes To A Party…
When My Baby Smiles At Me,
Sometimes I’m Happy, Don’t Be That Way…
The glitzy razzmatazz of jazz left them giddy.
When love entered his dreams chatting, listening,
he proposed to her with music plucked out
of his clarinet, a trembling wedding ring.