For Charlie Parker

Late in the night tonight, just some minutes ago I wrote a piece for Charlie Parker, after a watching a documentary on him earlier tonight. The influence he had on me creatively, in those early years that I moved out here, and the influence he continues to have on me cannot be overstated and he is a true hero of mine. I feel his energy with me constantly and his music is the kind that frees your mind and your body, melts away all your inhibitions and, like the man himself, allows you fly high.

I remember nights in Kansas City
You took me there, cast your light
I recall the music well my brother
Every morning, cold walk in the night
The rhythm ‘hind my pen, the engine
The force behind my heart sweatin’
I wrote out a fury you probably know
As I’d picture you, still grinnin’ from heaven
Do you still fly high there, Bird?
Great painter, hero soul
Do you lead the angels young and old?
To the glorious tones of that holy saxophone?

Shine on my friend
Gleam high sacred soul
You’re an angel that lit up the world
As you mended broken hearts and made them whole
And down here on earth, yea down here below
You brightened the road on dark nights so cold,
For lonesome brothers of yours, on their own long road home

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