The Note

I start by humming, midrange. There isn’t as much friction in my throat if I keep my lips parted as I was taught. But the point of hitting these notes isn’t for an audience, it’s to reduce the strangled feeling in the muscles of my neck. It always helps because I distract myself with the rather tricky melody and the frequency of the hum feels like healing fingers on all the is awry. Each tim, I start the pitch a little lower until I feel like a purring cat.

This is dipping my hands into toffee and watching as the sticky but welcome substance pulls away, staying with me. It’s crystalline chocolate that tastes great while flowing through me without stopping.


It’s the sensation of finally finding the note.

Jazzy Cool

The studio is set and the cool blonde strides in and arranges her sheet music on the stand in front of the microphone.

Her accompanist looks up with indifferent nonchalance. “So she graces us with her presence.” 

She ignores him, flipping through her music before greeting the trumpeter, bass player and drummer who are all smiles. 

“Hey, boys,” her sultry voice echoes before the microphone is even switched on. 

They nod politely, no one meeting eyes with the arranger. It’s like this every time, silence that one feels down to the bones. When new kids ask, the veterans of the combo shrug wordlessly. 

She hums to herself until the engineer across the glass readies the equipment. 

“All right,” she signals the accompanist. 

Once the music starts, all division is forgotten and the only thing on their minds is the melding of their styles into one. It is the gumbo of jazz, the synthesizing, the cooperation of what is real.