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Miles Davis, "It Could Happen to You": a poem

09-04-2019 | By Jim Merod | Issue 105

Fred Astaire & Miles Davis, a poem by Jim Merod

It Could Happen To You, as Miles knew,

growing up affluent near East St. Louis,

his father's horse paddock down the path

from my Aunt Rica's house in Millstadt.


More than most in the Depression, Miles

had means and interest to see films,

among them Astaire's and Ginger Rogers'      

mesmerizing otherworldly grace.


Miles' first quintet recorded be-bop classics

alongside ballads for Bob Weinstock.

All his life Miles' adored lyrical beauty,     

increasingly resisting its irresistible seduction.


Listen to his hip use of space, temporal

intervals inviting movement's gliding flow,

dance-like ease skating relaxed across

gorgeous quickly-caught recordings.