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June 20, 2016 by The Citron Review

by Jesse Breite

– B.B. King plays Twist, Arkansas


In the night, the club shimmered
off highway 42, Riley played
the soft, pliant blue strings of his guitar,
acoustic to a liquid audience
floating on the tired pathos of work
and rivers, of love and highways.
Lazy folk stirred and swung around
in rhythm. The dull bronze of his strings
gleamed, strummed into the cool air.
When notes jump-started and popped,
something greened with demand.
Feelings spilled like sapphires.
A silhouette hurled fistfuls into another,
and a kerosene stove spit flames.
Outside, the uneasy crowd watched
the bluesman disappear into the fiery jambs.
He ducked into the smoking proscenium
and culled her from the circus of fire.
Coughing on the other side, he said desire
leads a man blind in the night, and only
one woman can sing him into the light.

Jesse Breiteโ€™s recent poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Tar River Poetry, Chiron Review, and Prairie Schooner. He has been featured in Town Creek Poetry and The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume V: Georgia. FutureCycle Press published his first chapbook, The Knife Collector, in November 2013. Jesse lives with his wife, Emily, in Atlanta, Georgia.


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