When I was a young teenager
I fell in love with a xylophone
given to me as a gift by a friend
of my father who was an amateur
xylophone player himself.
I practiced relentlessly, wanting
to emulate Milt Jackson and his
Vibraphone since we had the same
first names.
When my family went camping
on my father’s 2- week vacation,
the landlord of our apartment
tossed my instrument out the window
in a fit of rage because of complaints
of other tenants in his apartment house.
We had to move to the top apartment
of a 2-family house where I had
permission to practice my trumpet.
I blew my brains out to the landlord
who lived around the corner.
I was never destined to be another Harry James.