In a backstreet workshop three trombonists toil,
forging fresh sonorities, concerted song-lines.
The whitewashed walls resound to the shouts
of this most venerable of brass instruments.
Yellowing folders of folk music are ransacked for rhythm,
cobwebbed counterpoint is wafted to the rafters.
With horticultural care a forest
of reminiscences and re-orderings is fine-tuned and fanfared.
Conjured up by implication: a jazz rhythm section;
then the aural mirage of a Lancashire brass band.
Multiple recitations and resuscitations
of the lost art of classical improvising.
Minuets and mambos consort with the blues.
Ska shuffles alongside Balkan laments.
Equali rub elbows with Echoes of Harlem,
Harry Lime meets Maria Rosa on Blueberry Hill.
That terrific roar, that sizzle and glow.
That clarion caress, that world-beating blare.
© Paul Taylor 2001