You inch down a narrow side street

of a windy winter

in an eastern European city

and into a dark recording studio,

it is 1928

and you sing--no, better!

you hold forth like a soaring eagle--

you will be dead

in just a handful of years.

Now eighty years later

--much longer than how long you lived--

on the eastern coast

of the New World,

I take your CD out on the deck

in summer sunshine

where winds bring only refreshment,

where you make the birds

in their praising pause.

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