For Jazz

                Joe Venuti

An old Italian in an outsize forties suit,
Somebody’s Uncle Joe, violin bow in his fist,
Pounding the floor with each determined twist
He gave ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’. It was himself, no substitute,
The real Giuseppe, heard half an age before.
‘I thought this bloke had died before the war’
Somebody said, no comment needed. Now instead
The amplified attack coursed tirelessly ahead.
During a pause he gave us all a taste
Of ‘Trovatore’,  bellowed in the air,
Unhitched his bow, retied the hair
Over, around the fiddle’s narrow waist,
And played that way. Then, taking leave too soon,
‘Gen’lmen, ladies, I am out of toon!’