music

BARITONE UKULELE HAIKU STACK W-I-P

(those flamingos are at it again)

 

G7/ Lonely lifetime search

A/ Wandering through corridors

G7/ Turning the wrong way

 

A/ So close, I sense you

G7/ Separated labyrinth

A/ Blind inside a maze

 

Em/ Mysteriously

A/ Life’s ancient map has appeared

Em/ Atlas of my love

 

A/ Our hearts synchronized

G7/ Earth, water, air and fire

A/ Magic words to meet

 

G7/ Fantasies and dreams

A/ Fevered shadows of the real

G7/ Now dispelled by A/ you

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Tenor Turned Baritone (DGBE) simple strumming

FISHING LINE ANTHEM

 

What a way

To cost-effectively play

Ukulele

Why buy strings

That stretch and break

When Walmart sells

The key to unending fun

In a magical reel

Like the discovery of the wheel

Something to change my life

So I string my Tenor

Like a Baritone

DGBE

Like a 4-string guitar

(Who needs bass?)

And plunk

Strum

Sing in the silence of a

Swampy womb

Or an air-conditioned room

Fishing string producing

Musica Universalis

Music of the Spheres

Do you hear?

I do…

2 closeup with fishline sm px

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

 

Images: RockStar & fishing line & ukulele / fishing line & ukulele

SONG OF THE SOLSTICE (for baritone ukulele)

FOR THE SUMMER SOLSTICE (Northern Hemisphere) and WINTER SOLSTICE (Southern Hemisphere) & Global MAKE MUSIC DAY (6-21-17)

 

 

C/ Today no peppermint Em/ tea

C/ No espresso Em/ coffee

G/ Best is the Em/ extraction

G/ Dripping from aromatic Em/ skin

A/ Xanthos-lemon Em/ juice

A/ Pressed between pomegranate Em/ lips

 

C/ Slipping through sultry G/ water

G/ Fresh from the Earth’s C/ sluice

C/ And I offer to G/ you

G/ This catholicon of C/ love

 

C/ Blind taste test Em/ seen through

C/ The sun above Em/ sparkling

G/ Lighting up the Em/ longest day

G/ While indelible Em/ music plays

A/ Fine-tuned strings Em/ echoing

A/ Through circle-of-life Em/ holes of sound

 

C/ And the day G/ Fades away

G/ Into tie-dyed black C/ denim

C/ The matching color of  G/ your eyes

G/Lemon and pomegranate C/ until sunrise

 

C/ Dew filtered through G/ you C/G

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja), words & chords

IMAGE: My Baritone Ukulele, Roses & Lemons

 

These chords for baritone ukulele or guitar (DGBE)

Can substitute Am for Em for tenor, concert or soprano ukulele (GCEA)

Can substitute A with D for tenor, concert or soprano ukulele (GCEA)

Make Music Day June 21!  http://www.makemusicday.org/…

PSYCHEDELIC CHIAROSCURO

 

Cardinals, Woodpeckers, Blue Jays

Chirping the dawn away

Dogs barking at squirrels

Tail shaking like chattering maracas

Me gasping “Black coffee!”

To offset rainbow shades

As I create a silent music

Of the tapping of text messages

FB posts

Twitterings

A cacophony of hello and love

With the underlying message

That we made it through the night

We’re all still here

Crowded day

Music plays

Background

Soundtrack

Of our busy lives

Weather hot, humid,

A suddenly damaging deluge

Lightning landing in the already scorched garden

Tin house shakes as

A discordant percussionist–

The drummer of the sky–

Goes control-freaky

Nothing to do until he tires

And the calming flute begins

Ah, here it is

Birds bathing in the after-drizzle

Drying feathers echo xylophone tunes

Dogs sniffing the lightning trail

Me singing to the battered mint

Grateful that the soundtrack

Of the day

Welcomes a glowing

Late afternoon

Bright blue and yellow

A precursor to the

Sun of the Solstice…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

Image: abstract quirky sun, free image

ST. JAMES INFIRMARY GHOST

New baritone ukulele has guitar chords, so re-learning it.  Been living with the words all week. Arlo Guthrie’s version is the only one (I’ve ever heard)  with the verse about “7 girls going to the graveyard/only 6 of them coming back.” Made his “baby” so real to me then. Had to write a Point-Of-View from one who is Everywoman and will remain nameless although I’m partial to “Baby”

*scroll down for a YouTube video*

 

What the hell?

Where am I?

Is that Big Joe McKennedy?

Red eyes, pulled an all-nighter

Card and dice cheater

Last I remember

He was trying to take my ring

It’s just a cheap, cracker-jack one

But mine

From better times

When he was winning

Now he’s a losing gambler

Already lost my mama’s

Dipped-in-gold locket

My papa’s silver watch chain

No, refused him

Where’s he going?

Joe!

Last I remember

He shoved me into the wall

Hit my head

On the brass bed

Then pushed into

The porcelain wash stand

What a man

Been out til I woke up

On this cold, white table

Dead!

I’m dead!

I’m so young, so cold, so still

But there he goes

Singing about himself

It’s always about him

About his funeral

About his blues

About his cheating heart

With chorus girls

And look, my finger’s bare

He got my ring anyway!

Seven of us going to the cemetery

Only six will return

But one is my cousin

The one who talks to ghosts

She sees me!

She knows!

No funeral for you

Big Joe McKennedy

Just a hanging tree…

 

* https://youtu.be/JsPLpt9jVvs

Arlo Guthrie version (singing begins 2:28)

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: St. James Infirmary, Brew Lite Jazz Tales

IF ONLY

chords notebook 3

 

What is the exact moment

I’d return to

If possible?

So many times

Need to be changed

Like not saying

“I do”

But now

In my oldness

The key to happiness

Lies in wood and strings

So if I could go back

To 8 months after

My sixteenth birthday

The day I said,

“I’m quitting guitar lessons”

I’d think

I’d persevere

I’d be a guitar player

In addition to hack writing

Beloved blogetry

I’d compose

I’d stop smoking and sing daily

I’d learn all those chords

I would

I would do

I would do what it takes

To get over that

Learning curve

Vision of me then

Long black hair

Freshly ironed straight

Almost to the waist

Yet not pretty enough to be

A performer

But smart enough to understand

Music tames the sadness

That savages the psyche

And who knows

Maybe I would have written

The Grammy song of the year

Deciphering musical notation

Acquiring the discipline

Dreams require

But it is today

And in celebration of

My newest

A baritone ukulele

D, G, B, E

Guitar chords!

I’ve written a

Haiku:

Whole new set of chords

Baritone ukulele

Bridge to a guitar…

 

baritone ukulele june 2017

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGES: My chord notebook & my new Baritone Ukulele

 

MANCHESTER SUNSHINE

 

(scroll down for YouTube video)

 

As we Baby Boomers begin our final journey

To who knows where

I wrestle with thoughts

Of how sure we were

That the sun would shine in

And all would be love, peace, music and poetry

 

Youth was a time

When even the place names

Far away

Magically wooed us

Manchester was one

Appearing in a song from “Hair”

Making no sense to me

Then or now

But a city I’d want to someday visit

 

Perhaps I’m so poor at Geography

Because some places exist

In realms uncharted

An alternate Geography

Living and breathing

In the mind

 

Now, Manchester has a new meaning

Sunshine, stardust, all the magic of youth

Blown apart…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Manchester Evening News

 

 

YouTube video (song begins at 2:49   https://youtu.be/fhNrqc6yvTU

Lyrics for Let the Sun Shine In http://www.songlyrics.com/hair/let-the-sunshine-in-lyrics/

 

ALGORITHM

200 px soprano w the stars 1 life wip

Forgetting the stars

Were already dead

Sang high SOPRANO

With thoughts of love

In my head

A joyful plunking

Of strings and voice

Youthful optimism

Wandering through

A bazaar of choice

 

200 px Luna Peace concert ukulele 2 wip life

Moved into a CONCERT

Of love and peace

Strengthening the range

Born of adulthood

Chains of dependency released

A perfect fit

In hand and song

An oasis of music

Happily growing

Sure to be content lifelong

 

200 px tenor wip life

The next stage

Vocalizing change

TENOR’s timbre

Reflecting experience

The Body estranged

Like winter’s last berries

Burning hot and red

Aging reflected

In deepening tones

Presaging thoughts of the dead

 

200 px baritone2 sm px

Ball and Chain

Channeling Joplin’s pain

As BARITONE chords

Mature like the guitar

Voice a burnished stain

Facing the box

Body juxtaposed

End of the line

Growling in anger

Gradation of life decomposed…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGES: My 4 ukuleles

HEARTS OF PALM

 

Flaming flamingos

Content in their colonies

Monogamously settled

While I fly

To the edge of a swamp

Finding amongst riotous,

Deciduous trees

A lone palm

Said to conceal the cure

For a broken heart

Inside the bark

Sleeps a mystery

Magic elixir

Hearts of palms

Calling to me

Musically

Strip away the wood

Revealing vulnerable vegetation

Intent on the source

I miss the landing

At last look up

There you are

Smiling down at me

Musically

Singing

Share your heart

And I know it’s a start

For capturing

Elusive love…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Flamingos seeking solace in my swamp