after Eduardo C. Corral
Sometimes, the memory of him playing
runs backwards. The notes leave the room, return
to the end of his instrument, back to his body.
I close my eyes and see him making reeds
at his workbench. He sharpens the knife
on the spinning wheel, the blade glowing.
The first time I knelt for a man, my hands shook,
reaching for his waistline. His smooth torso shone.
The moon in the window was a fully-clenched fist.
Shaping the cane, he shapes the notes themselves.
He ties up each mouthpiece with a length
of thread, singeing the ends with a match.