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Kezia's Song

from All The Bone by Mark Ari



My daughter, Kezia, sometimes calls me “old.” I think she’s getting back me, because I call her “little bit.” You’re “weak,” she’ll say. “And old.” She lets her eyes go wide when she says it and, shoulders back, shakes her head to heighten the drama of her words. The shake is her timpani roll for the slap and crash of the term flung hitting its mark. Right to the mush. It’s all very theatrical.

She’s trying to get my goat when she does that. But I don’t let on whether I’ve got a goat to get or not. She will never know how amazed I am that the tease she teases me with occurs to her as something I can be teased about. Apparent unflappability is one of my super powers. I have others. I am able to race through time with increasing velocity. I am fabulously more powerful than I someday will be. I can see through myself.

Really, I don’t think I’ve changed much since before my daughter came to know me. My preference to sing rather than be sung to persists. I am still given to strange and seemingly unprovoked behaviors at the drop of a dime. My capacity for self-destruction is undiminished. I am always on the verge—pick any precipice.

I have never believed in gravity. I’ve studied the formula and remain unconvinced. I find that both terrifying and terrifically funny. Just like Kez when she hurls her accusation at me. She fights back a smile. She can’t beat it. She’ll try to, but she can’t. Then she’ll do this furious chaîné toward me, land on my lap, and throw her head suddenly back with a force that always startles me.

I catch her. Of course, I do. And when I look at her, the grin is all out. She is fearless in my arms.

Words and music by Mark Ari.


from All The Bone, track released December 9, 2014
guitar and vocal, Mark Ari


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