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two on fiddles

Mitch Manning


from the monastery
that served beer
in tall tin mugs
down our cobblestoned hill
you found the latin cafe
a small bar, windowless
on a crooked side street

charlie would play mando
every now and then at night
with some guys
from spain or slovenia
and brad would always be there
that guitar guy expat
who played every joint in town
and talked about his marriages
what young chick he was dating
where you could go on a good bike ride

we got caught at a birthday party
one night for some portugese guys
who played electric guitars
and sweated out tequila
the singer looked me in the eyes
grabbed me by my shirt
holding his drink in the air
said how much he liked nirvana


on the island at the end of spring
the last few days you could still wear a hat
i kept my legs crossed tight on the flimsy
wooden chair and tapped my foot
to the pacific northwest irishman’s fiddle
as he played for the rich crowd
who all smiled and nodded
as if they knew the song he was singing

on the way back in the back seat
of the old volvo sitting next to the artists
i thought about how dark it was there
how clear the moon shone
between the trees
how new everything felt


July 15, 2011 12:02 pm

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