No breakout leads—a prisoner of reruns
on local stations high up on the dial:
a stray recurring role, a guest appearance
on Perry Mason. Later, Rockford Files.
Her second act? Pure dullsville in Van Nuys.
Chablis with ice. A Chevy dealership
gone belly up. Her paunchy husband’s lies:
a broken marriage. Then a broken hip.
None of that matters, if you ever catch her
singing “How High the Moon”—silvery, misty—
on that one show… She isn’t any match for
the stainless Julie London or June Christy,
but through her gauzy voice, as through a sieve,
spare notes of heaven reach you from afar.
For those two minutes, she’ll make you believe:
Somewhere there’s music. It’s where you are.
March 25, 2021
A Gift for the Long Game
The Emergency Everywhere